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Full text of "Designing women"

Gwendolyn HoycL 
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UNIVERSITY 
OF FLORIDA 
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THE ART/TECHNIQUE, AND COST 
OF BEING BEAUTIFUL 




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WITH CONSUELO KAMHOLZ 

Illustrated by Jane Miller 
Introduction by Alice Hughes 



SIMON AND SCHUSTER 

New York • ip^S 






All Rights Reserved 

Copyright, 1^)8, by Simon and Schuster, Inc. 

Published by Simon and Schuster, Inc. 

^86 Fourth Avenue, New York 



FOURTH PRINTING 



Manufactured in the United States of America 



C^onientd 



Foreword 



PAGE 

xiii 









^■5^ 



Part One. Choosing Clothes That **Do" 
Something for You 

Chapter i. Clothe shorse or Beauty? 3 

Chapter 2. Figure-ing Out Your Best Lines 11 

Chapter 3. Special Pointers for Strategic Points 50 

X^ Chapter 4. How Not to Be Your Age 61 

Chapter 5. Disporting Yourself 66 

Chapter 6. Capitalizing Your Face Value 77 

Chapter 7. Color Scheming 95 

Chapter 8. How Colors Color Your Outlook 107 

Chapter 9. Dressing in Tempo with Your 

Temperament 116 

Chapter 10. Which Designers Are for You? 134 

Part Two. The Etiquette of Clothes 

Chapter 11. Manners and Costumes 151 

Chapter 12. Avoiding Mesalliances 160 

Chapter 13. Local Color 169 

— V — 






154946 



CONTENTS 

PAGE 

Chapter 14. Platform Clothes 173 

Chapter 15. Six Women in Search of Chic 179 

Chapter 16. What Is This Thing Called 

Distinction? 200 

Part Three. The Cost of Clothes 

Chapter 17. Fourteen Points for Budgeteers 207 

Chapter 18. Big Changes for Small Change 221 

Chapter 19. How to Get Your Money^s Worth 227 

Postscript 

Chapter 20. And Finally That Indefinable 

Something 261 

Index 271 



VI 



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A WOMAN who wishes to feed her ego and to move 
with ease and social security in a chosen sphere of so- 
ciety starts by dressing the part. Her best bet is to dress 
impeccably and correctly, yet with that arrogant casual- 
ness which permits her to turn her attention to con- 
versation and conduct. 

Her costume, if advisedly chosen, conspires to help 
her relegate it to the subconscious. Therein lies the test 
for good clothes: the wearer must believe so whole- 
heartedly in the smartness and suitability of her costume 
that she can forget about it. But the beholder must be 
kept constantly aware of how lovely the wearer looks. 

I place the woman with ego in the first line of this 
introduction because I find her the most predominant 
woman of today. She yearns to be noticed. She wants to 
flag attention to herself. What better signals can she 
have than handsome habiliments? 

There are several kinds of dressers. There is the 
crisply costumed woman, neat, smooth and fairly ob- 
vious. There is the fussy female who pats herself and 
pinches a ruffle and picks imaginary threads off herself. 
Then there is the every-move-a-picture creature who 
keeps glancing downward to see that every fold is in 
place. 

There is the dowdy woman whose clothes, no matter 

— vii — 



INTRODUCTION 

how new and stylish, always proclaim illicit relations 
between themselves and the wearer. There is the gadg- 
ety kind of dresser who gets all tricked out in accessories. 
Then there is the woman who is well adjusted to her 
clothes who doesn't let them rule her, though they rule 
the glances of others in her direction. 

She is the woman we all want to be. She is the epit- 
ome of chic and ease, the woman who invariably stands 
out and looks best in any room, no matter what she 
wears. 

Margaretta Byers knows this woman. This writer's 
X-ray eyes penetrate the transparent fashion defenses 
women erect around themselves. She believes in sincerity 
in clothes as she does in sincerity in conversation or in 
writing. Her Designing Women is more than a lexicon 
of style information, in the mode today and out of date 
tomorrow. There is a timelessness about it which will 
keep its viewpoint fresh and new for many years. 

Like any person well grounded in the origin, con- 
struction, promotion, distribution, and acceptability of 
fashions, she knows that in the beginning, as in the end, 
clothes are important not nearly so much for how they 
look on the woman, as for what they do for her. Will 
they cement her social position? Will they help her get 
her man? Will they assure her husband's fidelity? Will 
she look good in the eyes of her children? 

And so on. Margaretta Byers does not stop with a 
searching analysis of clothes in relation to the ego. She 
goes into their fabrics, lines, colors, terminology, cost, 
and suitability. She knows the clothes market from an 

~ viii — 



INTRODUCTION 

inside track. Likewise, she has a privileged seat in the 
beauty business, and advises women expertly what lip- 
stick, what eye make-up, and in general, what face to 
aspire to, to win. 

Acquainted as I am with Margaretta Byers in a pro- 
fessional capacity, as a well-known and highly esteemed 
fashion writer, I know that her knowledge is factual, 
not fictional. I know she did not chew a pencil to de- 
duce why a fat woman should avoid horizontal prints, 
or why a woman with thick ankles should wear dark 
stockings. Miss Byers has ticked off so many consumers* 
reactions in the retail institutions of fashion and beauty 
where she has worked, that her findings are gospel. 



Alice Hughes 



New York 
1938 



— IX — 



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We wish to thank all those who have so kindly 
helped us with the preparation of this hook, in particular 
Miss Mary Beecher, Miss Evelyn Kronman of Joseph Hal- 
pert , Inc. J Miss Marion Powys of the Devonshire Lace 
Shop J Miss Pauline Alper of the American Viscose Cor- 
poration, Mr. Edwin Tamarin of Dein Bacher, Inc., Mr. 
Stanley Goodman, Mr. C. R. Heyde of American Shoe- 
making, The International Silk Guild, and The Superb 
Glove Company. 



foreword 



No ONE can write a book about fashion except in serial 
form, as a succession of yearbooks. This book does not 
attempt to tell you what is in style at the moment but 
rather what is your style. Once you know that, you can 
adopt your fashions as they come along and refrain from 
all the rest. That way you can achieve a made-to-order 
look without venturing out of ready-to-wear depart- 
ments. For great designers who create wardrobes ex- 
pressly for great ladies do just that. They put becoming- 
ness first and fashion second. Which is the secret of dis- 
tinction. 

So we give you principles of design that govern the 
art of dressing to make the most of your looks and ex- 
press your temperament. We add rules that determine 
the etiquette of dress, what to wear when and with what. 
And we suggest for the budget-ridden practical hints on 
wardrobe planning to make both the art and the eti- 
quette of dress— what we might call the champagne cock- 
tail of fashion— as easy as beer and skittles. 



^1 






PART ONE 



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CHAPTER ONE 



Clotheshorse or Beauty? 

Punch once ran a cartoon showing a woman as a man 
sees her and as a woman sees her. The man saw as much 
o£ the woman as was visible and took no note whatever 
of her clothes. The woman saw hat, dress, shoes, bag, 
etc. without so much as glancing at face, or ankles or 
figure. 

To spare you any embarrassing confessions, we shall 
assume you want to dress to please men; that is, to look 
like a beautiful woman. 

So many women say "My husband never notices what 
I am wearing." Do you realize they might as well say 
"My husband never notices me"? Of course no husband 
and only a pastel beau says "My dear, you would look 
too divine in Patou's new blue" or "I fancy I prefer you 
in a bias skirt." But the man you like to go out with says 
"You're looking rather gorgeous tonight." How long is 
it since a man said that to you? And what are you going 
to do about it? 

First you're going to take stock of yourself in a long 
mirror. You're going to admit your shortcomings with- 

-3- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

out flinching or taking refuge in the comfortable assur- 
ance that you're a good cook and the way to a man's 
heart is through his stomach. 

A woman who lectures on charm asks her audience 
how they would describe th prnsplvp*; tn thp pnlir^ And 
that' s a good formula for sizing yourse lf up. Pretend 
you're ca lling jhe police station to report yourself a s a 
missmg person. Go over your description of ynnrself 
ment^ly. Yq|. i wouldn't shade your wei.g:ht by several 
pounds J,Dri d^*^^T"ibp TnQiis,y,Ji aii:.,a&^.blonr]e, or green 
eyes as blue, a nd fib about your a,2:e to the police if you 
really wanted them to find you. Because they would 
fetch in^arious other women far better looking than 
yourself. 

Wdj., it is equally stupid to lie to yourself about vour - 
self . How can you alter the facts in the eye of the beholder 
if you refuse to believe they exist? Admit them and then 
go to work on yourself. We'll tell you how to dress to shed 
those pounds (apparently) and brighten that mousy 
hair and make those green eyes look blue and appear to 
be several years younger. Then you will have the same 
story in reverse English. If you described the actual facts 
to the police, they would bring in women looking far 
less attractive than your new and improved self. Just as, 
if you described a woman of forty-five with straight light 
brown hair and a stocky figure, they would never in this 
world go looking for Mary Pickford. Yet this would be 
an accurate description of Miss Pickford if she did not 
dress to make the most of her eyes and hair, complexion 
and figure. 

-4- 



CLOTHESHORSE OR BEAUTY? 



How can you achieve the distinction that challenges 
admiration? Distinction means dressing in some manner 
that distinguishes you from the crowd— not looking like 
a freak, of course, but creating a style of your own— a 
mood, a feeling that expresses a certain temperament. 
Most of us cannot afford custom-made clothes. But we 
can avoid the Fords of the garment trade and choose 
models with a little imagination. 

There is much heated argument as to whether Ameri- 
cans or Europeans are better dressed. We concede that 
the American rank and file in their ready-mades are 
turned out more smartly than the European proletariat 
in their home-mades. But among the upper classes, we, 
who have admitted to the masculine point of view, 
would decide unhesitatingly in favor of Europe. Be- 
cause best-dressed Americans are inclined to be fashion 
plates, mannequins, clotheshorses. They worship style. 
They dress to impress their women friends. While the 
upper class Europeans frankly dress to please men. They 
are not slaves to the prevailing mode. They will have 
none of it if it does not suit them. 

Smart European women dress to make the most of 
their looks. Now American women are generally ac- 
knowledged to be the most beautiful in the world. But 
the Europeans less generously endowed by nature seem 
to surpass us because they study themselves rather than 
fashion and understand perfectly how to dress to create 
an illusion of beauty. This self-knowledge explains va- 
rious national traditions of dress. They are simply the 
most flattering styles for certain national characteristics. 

-5- 



-< 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

For instance, the large-boned, rather angular British 
aristocrat fairly lives in tweeds. And they're perfect for 
her. The full-breasted French woman wears certain ef- 
fects about the bodice, which we shall explain in detail 
later, that idealize her proportions. The dumpy Spanish 
type wears mantillas and long full skirts to give her 
height. We, being a mongrel race composed of many, 
widely varied types, could be and should be more indi- 
vidualistic than any other nation. It is irony that we run 
ourselves in one mold. 

And smart Europeans dress to dramatize their tem- 
peraments. The French jeune fille stresses naive sim- 
plicity with bows and ruffles. The dashing Parisienne 
stresses sleek, streamlined sophistication with severe 
sheath silhouettes and a bit of excitement always some- 
where about her costume. The romantic Italian goes in 
for fabrics reminiscent of Medici magnificence, and 
strikingly set jewels. The patrician Englishwoman 
stresses conservative elegance. There are few gamines in 
Europe. They are an American development. But the 
Romany gypsies can lend us inspiration for this type in 
the evening. And the English schoolgirls supply sym- 
pathetic ideas for sports clothes. Finally the exotic White 
Russian stresses her vivid, intense temperament with 
breathtakingly daring designs, costumes that are stark 
drama rather than conventional fashions. With all our 
excursions into psychoanalysis, we Americans should 
have our own temperaments down pat. But we have yet 
to learn what the European knows instinctively: how 
to interpret our temperaments in terms of fashion. 

-6- 



CLOTHESHORSE OR BEAUTY? 

You will find as you study this subject that each Paris 
couturier works with some definite temperament type 
well in mind. Marcel Rochas turns out what is known 
as the ingenue beautifully. But we should rather call 
her the coquette because, whatever her age, she is al- 
ways a young, frivolous, gaily coquettish spirit (witness 
Billie Burke). Mainbocher is unequaled at costuming 
the sophisticate. (He did the Duchess of Windsor's 
trousseau. What could be better proof?) Louiseboulanger 
is guide, counselor and friend to the romantic type. 
(We'd like to see her dress Garbo, who is an outstand- 
ing example of this temperament— remote, dreamy, ethe- 
real.) Molyneux dresses the patrician to perfection 
(women like the Duchess of Kent). Chanel, herself a 
gamine at heart, knocks out one rebellious idea after an- 
other for non-conformists (like Katharine Hepburn). 
And Lanvin has a particular flair for exotic types. (She 
recently did a whole wardrobe for Marlene Dietrich.) 
Naturally you have to watch these couturiers from sea- 
son to season. For at any moment, any one of them may 
have a change of heart. 

All this explains why Paris is the fountainhead of 
fashion ancjr why Europeans of the upper social strata 
are the most beautifully dressed women in the world 
from the masculine point of view. Check over any list 
of best-dressed women compiled by a man and you will 
discover every one dresses to idealize her face and figure j 
compliment her coloring, and dramatize her tempera- 
ment. Probably your wardrobe cannot be as extensive 
or as expensive as that of a world-famous best-dressed 

-7- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

woman. But it can be quite as becoming. How do these 
women do it? 

Well, to begin with the first of these three fine arts, 
they manage this re-designing of themselves through 
optical illusions based on certain fundamental artistic 
principles. These principles are well known to every de- 
signer. But to the American public at large, they are 
hidden mysteries closely guarded by the high priestesses 
of fashion. And no wonder. Because once you know 
what certain lines, colors, and textures will do to your 
appearance, you will know whether to take them or 
leave them. You won't have to pay prohibitive prices 
for individual advice in custom shops. You can pick and 
choose quite successfully in ready-to-wear departments 
because you'll know definitely what to do and especially, 
what not to do. 

An impish fashion magazine once ran a page of car- 
toons that might have been called "How to Alienate 
Your Boy Friends and Petrify People." We submit a 
similar collection of our own. You must have seen the 
top-heavy Peter Arno lady who wears a fortune in silver 
fox billowing about her ample bosom, looking for all 
the world like a pouter pigeon. You are familiar, no 
doubt, with the square, chunky figure in a plaid cape 
from which her short arms and legs emetge in mock 
turtle fashion. And you often meet the lady in the black 
and white print whose Plymouth Rock pattern is quite 
perfect for a hen party, or the neckless lady whose cart- 
wheel hat gives her the smug effect of a toad under a 
mushroom, or the Roman-nosed lady in a peaked skull 

-8- 



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DESIGNING WOMEN 

cap that suggests nothing so much as an amiable ant- 
eater. 

We could go on indefinitely, railing at unfortunate 
treatments of figures and faces and complexions, too. 
But by this time we hope you're convinced that we im- 
perfect humans need all the help we can get from our 
clothes. Why is it so few women do anything about this? 
Let's hope it's because they don't know just what to do. 
In order that those ready and willing may also be able, 
we shall devote the first part of this book to studying 
you and you and you. 

We shall give you specific lines, colors and fabrics 
for each basic figure type; make-ups, coiffures, and mil- 
linery for each fundamental face and profile type; cos- 
tume colors for each shade of skin, hair and eyes; lines, 
colors, fabrics and period influences most expressive of 
each temperament type. And we shall attempt to prove 
our points with sketches. We warn you the optical illu- 
sions we achieved with figures and faces surprised even 
our artist. We can't blame you if you don't quite be- 
lieve them until you try out the theories firsthand by 
trying on the kind of clothes recommended for you. 



— lO 



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CHAPTER TWO 



Figure-ing Out Tour Best Lines 

We begin with the thing a man notices first of all— 
the figure. Before we can decide how to achieve the per- 
fect figure, we must decide what the perfect figure is. 
The ideal changes with different civilizations. The 
Greeks laid down definite rules for it, but their figures 
seem a little heavy to us today. We see our contemporary 
ideal, however, every time we go to the movies— or think 
we do. We except, of course, Mae West pictures. For 
Mae is valiantly and robustly waging a campaign single- 
handed to bring back more comfortably u phol ste red 
figures. Still, even the most ardent Mae West fans do 
not aim to copy her figure. And she has never yet been 
chosen by any artist as one of the great beauties of 
Hollywood. On the contrary, Dolores del Rio's well- 
turned body was once voted the artist's ideal. From 
which we conclude the modern goal is a figure as slen- 
der as is humanly possible without actually baring one's 
bones. 

Nor are the cinema stars very tall. Five feet five seems 
to be the most admired height. Taller actresses like 

— 11 — 



--:-^ : " -"-mm 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



Hedda Hopper and Aline McMahon are relegated to 
character roles or dressed so as to look shorter like Garbo 
and Kay Francis. You will find they do all the tricks we 
suggest later on for cutting down height. 

So, too, angular figures like Zasu Pitts are never slated 
to play the heroine. Actually Miss Pitts is not partic- 
ularly angular. But the clothes she wears on the screen 
should be shunned by anyone who wants to look, in 
Hollywood parlance, curvaceous. Notice how she does 
the exact opposite of our suggestions for flattering this 
type. 

Many of the stars are actually short. But who would 
ever think it of Miriam Hopkins, for instance, or Con- 
stance Bennett? The wardrobe people manage to give 
them an illusion of willowy height. Check these ac- 
tresses' clothes with the recommendations we give for 
the petite woman. 

And there are buxom figures in Hollywood that do 
not appear Mae Westish. Look at Simone Simon or 
Sylvia Sidney or even Marlene Dietrich! Yes, look at 
them and the clothes they wear and see how their 
streamlines check with our schemes. 

Very well then, the modern ideal is medium height, 
incredibly slender, but interestingly rounded. And the 
Joan Crawford influence has added the wide-shouldered 
angle that makes the hips seem more lissom than ever 
by contrast. When last we checked on Miss Crawford's 
clothes, she was wearing, believe it or not, size thirty- 
four (that's equivalent to a misses' size sixteen, you 

— 12 — 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

know). And the one thing she insisted on was "nothing 
tight at the shoulders." 

You see the stars of Hollywood are only imperfect 
humans after all. But their secret is that they wouldn't 
be caught dead in some of the get-ups we see in real 
life on both Main Street and the Main Stem. 

Now in order that she who runs to the movies may 
read how to emulate her current movie rave's feminine 
form divine, we shall begin by laying down a few gen- 
eral rules for creating the illusion of a faultless figure. 

Women with figures that measure up on every count 
—who are more perfectly proportioned than the reign- 
ing beauties of Hollywood— may skip the rest of this 
chapter and all of the next because they can wear any- 
thing. But such women are rarer than you might think. 
As a rule, even professional models can't wear every 
type of clothes with equal success. They are listed at 
their agencies according to their fortes. So don't let all 
this give you an inferiority complex. It's not so much a 
question of inferior figures as of superior taste. 



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Rule i. To call attention to your best points, reveal 
them, fit them closely or accent them with color or 
jewelry. For instance, if your neck is perfect, reveal it 
with low neck-lines. If your shoulders are good, show 
them with off-the-shoulder neck-lines. If your ankles 

— i% — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

are pretty, reveal them with shortish skirts, or in the 
evening, with uneven hems. If you have a tiny waist, 
fit it closely with nipped-in waist-lines. If your chest 
is perfect, fit it with a tight bodice completely un- 
adorned. If your hips are slender, fit them closely by 
means of a sheath silhouette. Or the woman with 
a perfect neck may accent it with necklaces. The 
woman with a small waist may accent it with a con- 
trasting belt. The woman with graceful ankles may 
point them with light stockings. 

Rule 2. Never accent a good point that will bring out 
a had point. That is, a full breasted woman who fits 
her comparatively slender hips too tightly only 
heightens her lack of proportion. 

Rule 3. Never leave a had point undisguised— mask it, 
or cut it up, and then accent something else. A thin 
woman should shun decollete gowns. A woman with 
prominent neckbones covers them with a halter neck. 
A flat chested woman creates an illusion of fullness 
with well calculated shirring, or a subtly curved neck- 
line. Or a woman with a large waist-line may cut it 
up with diagonal lines or with partial belts. A woman 
with a tummy may cut it up with a round-cornered 
jacket or a buxom woman may cut up her curves with 
a bolero. A woman with large hips may belittle them 
by calling attention to her shoulders via padding. The 
woman with a large waist may distract attention from 
it by flaring her skirt. But before distracting atten- 
tion from anything, you should first mask it by some 
sort of misleading line. 

-14- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

Rule 4. Never repeat a bad line. If you consider your 
height a disadvantage, don't harp on it with a parade 
o f buttons down th e front or a ruffle from neck to 
hem. If your hips are too large for you to be com- 
pletely pleased with them, don't wear a jacket that 
ends at their equator, so to speak, and runs straight 
round it. 

Rule 5. Remember light colors make you look large r. 
This goes for everything right straight thro ugh from 
coats to gloves. Black, navy, and dark neutral colors 
generally, tend to make you look smal ler. Light colors 
including li.g^ht fflrays but particularly brig h t co l a rs. 
make you look 'larger than you really a re" as one 
tactful salesgirl put it to a misguided size forty-six. 
So, if you want to look larger above the waist, wear a 
lighter bodice or jacket. If you want to look smaller 
above the waist, wear a misleading vestee and keep 
the rest of your dress in a darker key. 

Rule 6. BearJ^n mind that shiny surfaces are not slen- 
derizing. Do you remember the old stocking ads for 
dull sheers showing Auntie, a rotund person, whose 
ankles seemed bursting out of shiny stockings? Well, 
the same thing is true of dresses. Satins, pannevelvet s, 
sequins, and lames highlight every curve you have. 
Use them for this pu rpose. It you wish to minimize 
too lush curves, avoid lustrous fabrics like the plague. 

Rule 7. Remember the weight of th e fq b'^ia^add..<LiLppa r- 
e nt weis^hi^to you , T\^eed suits add pounds to an y 
figiire. That is why angular women adore them. 
Women who don't wish to add pounds will look far 

-15- 






DESIGNING WOMEN 

b etter in sharkskin, twill, thin wo ol, etc. V flvpt ^n H 
velveteen and duvetyn also add poun ds. Ai]d lon g- 
haired furs do too if used as fabric for entire cap es or 
jy)ats. Th at is why moire caracul has become so popu- 
lar; because it is almost as thin as fabric. In this con- 
nection, it is a smart trick to wear a coat dress instead 
of a coat and dress. Because it gives you one less thick- 
ness and so cuts down the silhouette. These things 
make more difference than you might think. 

Rule 8. Q^member lines— stripes , pleats, tucks, seams , 
rows ^ buttons, etc.— accent the direction in which 
the^ travel. V ^tical Imes accent height and minim ize 
width . Horizontal lines do just the opposite. Lines 
radiating from the waist-line help to create an illu- 
sion of a nipped-in waist despite actual measurements 
to the contrary. 

Rule 9. PJaids and checks accent b oth height and width 
bec ausfir they^"are''nTott\i1'r$r"^^ht lines runniii^bo th 
vertically and hnri7nnt;^Hy. 

Rule 10. Rernember clinging or diaphanous fabrics be- 
tray the figure beneath. Unless you are as perfectly 
proportioned as a dryad, don't wear silk or wool jer- 
sey. Chiffon is the undoing of imperfect figures unless 
it is shirred or given body in some way. And sheers 
are just as bad unless worn over a crisp silk frock that 
holds its own lines. Then dark sheer coats are slen- 
derizing and tremendously smart. 

Rule 11, Bierne mber, big, bold prints make you look 
sr—and~smdlTl:led'dy defined p tints, ~tavr'' t:^rge^ 

-16- ' ' 



larger- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

splashy prints are for slender people i^nless the fignrps 
are so large and so widely spaced that they have the 
effect of trimming. Then if they hit the figure at 
strategic spots, they may help to mask undesirable 
lines. But, in general, the reducing prints are small 
all-over patterns that give a misty effect and blur the 
outlines of the silhouette into fade-away effects. Also 
. ^^Ika dots or almost any kind of dot?^ or re gular , 
small figures have an enlarging effect . They seem to 
say "Look how many dots we had room for on this 
woman." They can make a medium-sized woman look 
like a ten acre lot. 

Rule 12. Consider the ensemble as a whol ^ ^ inrludin f r 
the hat. Use a full length mirror and walk away froi 
i t tp^t the effect of the long shots as well as the 
close yps. Doing this wiu give you the proper per^ 
spective so you will never display slender hips at the 
expense of a full bust or commit similar crimes 
against your figure. Also it will show you where to 
put your waist-line. (Long-waisted figures will raise 
it of course, for leg length, and vice versa.) It will 
help you to get the right proportion between shoul- 
ders and hips. And it will teach you a lot about hair 
and hats. Of course, you choose a coiffure and a hat 
to suit your features. But never decide on a perma- 
nent coiffure or actually buy a hat without studying 
the long view. 

Rule 13. Consider the profile view and ''the going away 
view/' Do this anyway but especially if you have a 

-17- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

dowager's hump or a sway back or what is politely 
called embonpoint (tummy to the trade), or a seden- 
tary hip spread. 
Rule 14. Suit your accessories to your size. This is only 
common sense. Marie Dressier, who had very large 
hands, used to wear a ring with two enormous pearls, 
that dwarfed her hand considerably. Conversely a 
small woman should never carry a tremendous bag. 
She looks silly lugging a portmanteau-size carryall. 

All this is theory of course. On the following pages, 
you see it in practice. Now let's get down to cases. 



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The Short Figure. You can, by taking thought, add 

cubits to your apparent stature. Here's how. 
^j. Use Io ns, unbroken princess lines. That means wear 
dresses rather tnah suits whenever possible. It means 
no sudden flares in your skirt, no break in color (that 
is, no lighter bodices and darker skirts) . It means no 
wide belts or tunics or peplums or short coats to cut 
the figure horizontally. Fitted frocks without belts do 
miracles to add length. It means shoulders padded 
discreetly or not at all— in short a slender silhouette 
avoiding horizontal lines to stress length. 

2. Raise the w aist-li ne to frgin leg leng th. If you wear a 
belt, wear it abov^^me natural waist-line. To do this 
you will have to tack it. Or have your clothes nipped 

-18- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

in at an elevated waist-line. This waist will be slightly 
larger than the natural one because it will be located 
just at the floating rib. But the leg length you gain 
will more than compensate for that. And it will give 
you a longer and more graceful hipline. 

5. Wear your skirts longish for still more leg length. 
This will not look dowdy if you wear high heels as of 
course you do for the inches they afford. Also stock- 
ings as dark or as light as your costume will help to 
make you look all of a piece and make the length of 
your skirt seem quite correct. 

^ Stress t he vertical always. Once you've started think- 
ing about this, you will discover all sorts of ways to 
do it. A dress with a ruffle from neck to hem, a coat 
dress whose closing is outlined with grosgrain ribbon, 
a coat with buttons or a border of fur all the way 
down the fron t, a reversible crepe dress with a satin 
panel, vertical stripes, tucks, shirring, anything whose 
motif continues from neck to hem will increase your 
apparent^height perceptibly. , t-j 

5. W^ar detail only on your Imhice. This will increase 
the long-legged eitect you want. Break up the bodice 
as you will. But don't wear pockets on your skirt, or 
tiers of ruffles or anything at all. (We're talking about 
the petite figure. If you fancy your hips need mask- 
ing, read directions for the wide-hipped figure.) 

6. If you must wear jackets or capes, have them waist- 
length or shorter. Nothing must cut your figure below 
the waist-line. When you do wear suits or odd jackets, 
they must be of the bolero type. And your capes must 

-19- 








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DESIGNING WOMEN 

be brief affairs suitable to your piquant personality. 
Waist-length is the absolute deadline for them. Half- 
way down the arm is a becoming length for capes, 
too. Even shoulder tippets of fur are suitable worn 
over a dress or a coat. 

7. Stick to small hats. A large hat will have the devas- 
tating effect of making you look like a toad under a 
mushroom. And you, alone, of all the figure types 
can wear those little caps with the most dashing ef- 
fect. So why not make the most of this talent? Pill 
boxes, fezzes, turbans, toques, poke bonnets, Flemish 
caps, flower caps, Scotch caps and the taller shakos, 
too, that give you height. Also Tyrolean caps with 
tall-making feathers and Russian mitered effects are 
made for you. So don't hide your light under a bushel. 
Of course you will choose models whose particular 
lines suit your face (see Chapter 5), but don't forget 
the long view in the cheval glass. And don't cut down 
your height by wearing a long, dangling veil dripping 
in feudal fashion from a peak or in Arab style ofiE a 
desert helmet. Your motto in millinery should be 
Excelsior^ lifting you up by the bootstraps as it were 
to new heights. Rolled up brims are the only kind 
possible for you, Breton sailors, high-crowned pos- 
tilion hats, and Watteau effects poised as if for flight. 

8. Wear small accessories. Large ones will dwarf you. 
No great hunks of couturier jewelry for you but semi- 
precious stones in delicately wrought settings. Even 
in a jewelry year go easy, don't pile it on. You can't 
get away with it. No smashing corsages to smother 

— 22 — 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

you either, but three camellias or one orchid worn 
not at the waist, but on one shoulder, or at the neck 
of your gown, or even over your heart, would be fine. 
Wear small furs. No great fox skins because on you 
they will look obvious and nouveau and in quite bad 
taste, to say nothing of the fact that they will make 
you look top-heavy. But several small sables or kolin- 
sky or baum marten or kit fox will make a graceful 
scarf; one that you can carry off like a queen. Keep 
your furred coat collars small too. Keep everything 
in proportion to your petiteness and you will have 
the poise of a truly great lady. 



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The Tall Figure. Don't stoop to conquer. It will only 
spoil your figure. But dress to conquer your self- 
consciousness about your height. Here are nine ways 
to do it. \ 

1. Cut the height with line or color. This means wear 
suits of every sort except bolero suits. Boleros will 
make you look as though you are growing out of your 
clothes. Wear tunics and jigger coats and three-quar- 
ter length capes. Wear odd jackets of a different color 
from your skirt. Wear contrasting belts and sashes. 

2. Wear your waist-line as low, as possible. This can be 
done with narrow belts worn at the natural waist-line 
or with fitted things nipped just above the hips. Link- 

-23- 



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DESIGNING WOMEN 

button suits can be adapted in this way, too, with ex- 
cellent effect. 
5. Wear your skirt quite short. This cuts down the long- 
legged, short-waisted effect of this figure. Do not be 
self-conscious about showing quite a bit of ankle. 
Darker stockings will take away that leggy look. And 
don't worry about calling attention to your feet. Well 
get to them in a moment. 

4. Wear a plain bodice and a cut-up skirt. This also 
helps to rearrange your proportions. The only detail 
permissible on your bodice is a row of buttons or a 
ruffle or some other vertical detail ending at the low 
waist-line. This will help to make the waist look 
longer. Below the waist, however, you should cut up 
the length with a hip-length jacket or a tunic or a 
peplum or pockets or panniers or some other detail 
to distract the eye from the longitude. And you 
should break the line of the skirt's silhouette by flar- 
ing it from the knees. 

5. Stress the horizontal. Avoid vertical stripes, long or 
swagger lines, especially tuxedos, buttons, borders or 
any detail parading all the way down from neck to 
hem. But stress the horizontal, discreetly of course, 
so as to make the most of your slenderness, with 
padded shoulders, belled skirts, possibly banded at 
the hem, setting off what will appear by contrast an 
incredibly small waist. 

6. Stick to low, wide hats. Obviously small caps make 
this figure look pin-headed. Do not confine yourself 
to picture hats, but if you wear a turban it should not 

-26- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 



be a close turban. Your millinery always must be in 
perfect proportion to your height. With an ordinary 
sailor you can save yourself an inch. With a turned 
down brim you can cut off at least two more. Or you 
can wear a medieval veil to excellent advantage. Like- 
wise, in the evening, high-piled hair and aigrettes are 
sheer madness for the tall figure. But a long bob and 
a low set clip or flower are perfect. 

7. Wear low-heeled^ short-vamped, square-toed shoes. 
Low-heeled shoes are a boon, especially for dancing 
when a long frock hides the feet. The trouble is, low- 
heeled shoes worn with street clothes are apt to make 
ankles look larger and feet as long as gun boats. The 
first difficulty can be overcome with dark stockings of 
a neutral shade. And ankle straps are much more 
slenderizing than straps over the arch. But to prevent 
low heels from making your feet long, you must 
choose them with great care. Square toes, short vamps, 
open toes, and sandals cut down at the side to the 
sole, all foreshorten the foot. 

8. Wear large accessories. Carry the biggest bag you can 
find. Cover your long wrists with great barbaric hand- 
cuffs by day, glittering collections of bracelets by 
night. Your long hands need at least one great, breath- 
taking ring. Wear great clusters of flowers. Don't be 
afraid of overdoing it. The bigger your accessories, 
the more they dwarf your height. 

p. Wear sumptuous furs. Your long neck needs big col- 
lars of long-haired fur. Your shoulders need broaden- 
ing with double skin scarfs of red or silver fox. You 

-27- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

are the one type who can carry them off without seem- 
ing vulgar. But don't wear your furs tuxedo fashion, 
kicking down around your knees. Keep them slung 
gracefully around your shoulders in the horizontal 
lines that are so becoming to you. 



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The Angular Figure. Even if she needs to put on 
weight, a woman hesitates to try it for fear she may 
start something she can't stop, or for fear the calories 
will show no sense at all and go to quite the wrong 
places. But, by dressing carefully, you can mold your 
figure to your ideal and apply just the curves you 
want just where you want them. How? Read on and 
see. 

J. Avoid straight lines. This means no box jackets, no 
straight skirts, no swagger suits, no tuxedo effects. 
Obviously this type needs all the curves possible. 

2. Wear clothes fitted at the waist and hips and wrists. 
Your tiny waist, slender hips, and wrists are your best 
points. Display them by all means. Your clothes 
should hit you there and then digress into what will 
look like curves by contrast. For instance, a skirt bell- 
ing from a nipped-in waist will give you grace. A 
bodice curving softly from a nipped waist to padded 
shoulders will do a lot for your chest. Sleeves tapering 
from bouffant shoulders to fitted wrists will take away 
the effect of pipe stem arms. Soft dressmaker suits 
-28- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

rather than tailored ones will suit you best. And short 
capes will soften your shoulders. 
Wear covered neck-lines. Yours is the only type that 
looks well in floating draperies. Wear them for all 
they're worth— and they're worth a lot to you. For 
evening draperies tossed high at your neck like a 
nun's coif and trailing out behind are good. Or a 
decolletage in flattering curves veiled with chiffon or 
net that continues over your arms is most friendly to 
you. In the daytime, standing Empire collars, Eliza- 
bethan ruffs and calla lily collars will make your long 
slender neck an asset rather than a liability. 
Wear fabrics with body. Velvets, taffetas, brocades, 
broadcloths, all are kind to your figure. Starched lace 
and shirred chiffon may be depended upon to give 
you good lines, too. And quilted satin blouses will 
give you the contours you sigh for. Never wear sweat- 
ers or knitted suits or any clinging fabric. 
Wear a good deal of detail. What would look fussy on 
a fuller figure is most becoming to you; frilly blouses, ij 

ruffs to round out your thin neck, peplums, flared 
skirts, capelets, laced bodices, ruffled or tucked yokes, 
ruchings, flounces, lace, bows, sashes, and touches of 
fur; all the soft devices you can think of are your 
particular style. 

Avoid tailored hats. You might as well wear a Salva- 
tion Army bonnet as a severely straight sailor. You 
need soft little caps trimmed with flowers or fur or 
provocative little veils. And they should not try for 
height. Little Victorian toques, halo hats, picturesque 

-29- 







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Florentine berets worn way on one side; in short, 
smallish, off-the-face, framing-the-face millinery, its 
particular lines governed as always by the exact shape 
of the face (see Chapter 6) is charming. 

7. Wear high-heeled, short vamp shoes. This type usu- 
ally has a long, narrow, hard-to-fit foot. Naturally 
shoes with long pointed toes are particularly bad. But 
that's what the stores insist on giving you unless you 
make a fuss. It is all very well to go to places that 
specialize in fitting the narrow heel. But just ask them 
what they propose to do about the toes. Demand high- 
heeled, short-vamp shoes. Your foot will arch itself 
quite easily into these lines that take up so much of 
the length and actually will cover less ground from 
heel to toe. And it will look even shorter. Because 
the foreshortened effect of the short vamp subtracts 
still more length from the general effect. 

8. Wear lightish dull- finished stockings. You are one of 
the few types who should wear light stockings always, 
to give your ankles more contour. 

p. Avoid tailored accessories. You can wear froufrou 
without looking absurd; in fact you should wear it- 
fluffy, feather capes for evening, intricate scarfs in 
the daytime, French rather than English bags, jeweled 
clips, flexible bracelets, quaint boutonnieres or cor- 
sages. Choose every accessory with an eye to femininity, 
bearing in mind constantly that you are not a tailored 
type. Because your streamlined, boyish figure looks 
far too masculine in tailored clothes. You must for- 

-32- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

ever be on your guard against this and devote your- 
self to the cultivation of femininity. 
lo. Wear fur capes rather than scarfs. The reason for this 
is that they will give you more "body." Your furs, of 
course, like everything else should be exquisitely soft. 
Mink is perfect or sable. And amongst the less pre- 
cious furs, squirrel, Australian opossum or nutria. 



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The Plump Figure. This type is, of course, the hardest 
to dress. You must do the exact opposite of everything 
we recommended for the thin figure. And in addition, 
you must do what we recommend for the short figure. 
Because making you look taller will automatically 
make you look thinner. And in addition to all that, 
you must learn special tricks of your own. Here is a 
list of them. 

I. Never wear anything tight or clinging. So many wom- 
en get some sort of spiritual satisfaction out of squeez- 
ing themselves into a size eighteen when a size twenty 
would make them look pounds thinner. Now what is 
the good of that? No one sees the size tag except you 
and the salesgirl. Everybody sees the final effect. And 
if you fairly ooze out of your clothes, it gives an im- 
pression of bursting with— shall we say health? Cling- 
ing things are just as bad. Knitted clothes are out, too. 
And never think you will do better without a slip. 

-33- 




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The fraction of an inch you save in circumference is 
not half as noticeable as the fact that your frock clings 
in a regrettable manner to your derriere. By the same 
token, chiffon and silk jersey are deplorable. 

2. Choose thin fabrics. Choose silk rather than wool, 
thin wool rather than tweed, crepe rather than slip- 
per satin. And we mentioned earlier the trick of wear- 
ing a coat dress rather than a suit to avoid two thick- 
nesses of material around the hips. Another trick is, 
never wear a double-breasted suit, since it, too, pre- 
sents two thicknesses exactly where you are most anx- 
ious to cut down on bulk. 

5. Stick to unbroken, vertical lines. No skirts and jack- 
ets. If you must wear a suit, swagger styles are best. 
All the tricks of emphasizing height we mentioned for 
the small woman, buttons down the front, vertical 
borders and so forth, are even more necessary for you. 

^. Rely on side closings for coats and coat dresses. The 
side closing is extremely flattering, particularly the 
one copied from a policeman's coat. This motif can 
be adapted a dozen ways with buttons, pleats, stitch- 
ing, etc. 

5. Never wear a complete belt. Indicate the waist-line 
subtly. Nip it. And rely on the long flare of a gored 
skirt and slightly padded shoulders to convey a small 
waist by contrast. Or use the link-button combined 
with borders. Or start your belt at either side. Or stop 
it on either side in butcher boy fashion. Or convey a 
waist-line with rows of buttons, weskit style, or imply 
it with a panel down the front tapering as desired. 

-36- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

6. Wear loose armholes. This accomplishes two things. 
It masks the upper arms. And it permits the bodice to 
taper more noticeably toward the waist. 

7. Wear your skirts longish. This also serves a double 
purpose. It gives you leg length. And it lets your skirt 
flare further at the hem so as to make your waist all 
the more slender by contrast. 

8. Wear dark colors. We told you about this in Chap- 
ter 1. 

5>. Wear dull finished fabrics. See also Chapter 1. 

70. Concentrate detail at neck and wrists. Remember 
we said these were your good points. By detail we 
don't mean frills but rather a strikingly cut neck-line 
and interesting close-fitting lower sleeves. And con- 
centrate your color at these two points. 

II. Don't wear caps or turned down brims. Caps will 
make you looked pinheaded quite as much as your 
tall friend. And turned down brims will obliterate 
your short neck and seem to sit smack on your shoul- 
ders. No, you must choose your hats with great care. 
They must strike a happy medium. And they must 
sweep upward to give you height. Tricornes will do 
the trick nicely, especially if you cock your cocked hat 
rakishly over one eye. Also there is a kind of Watteau 
hat with an up-in-the-back brim that's very good for 
you. And diadem effects will give you a flattering line. 
Just keep in mind the happy medium and the up- 
lifted lines and you can wear the youngest, giddiest 
hat of that nature in the shop. 

72. Don't wear shoes that look sensible. You may have 

. -37- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

to wear orthopedic shoes. But today you can find 
handsome ones. Don't wear long pointed toes that make 
your feet look too slender to support you. By flatter- 
ing your feet in this way you hurt your figure so that 
you lose more than you gain. Remember the long 
view. Stand before a full length mirror and study the 
toute ensemble. Also don't wear straps over the instep 
or pumps. Both cut into the flesh in a manner that is 
painful to others if not to you. Wear one strap well 
up toward the ankle. Or wear monk shoes. And if you 
must wear pumps, choose a Colonial style. 

f^. Wear large accessories. Carry a bag so big it makes 
you look positively petite. And you can have color 
here without fear of its making you look larger. Wear 
massive clips and rings. They will make you look 
much less so. And you will find graduated pearls much 
more flattering to your round neck than ropes of 
matched ones. 

j^. Stick to short-haired furs. In coats and capes moire 
caracul or galyak wdll make you pounds slenderer than 
beaver or silver fox or even medium-haired mink. And 
don't wear great fur scarfs or collars. You haven't the 
neck for it. The flatter furs in narrow bands will offer 
you much more flattery. 

75. Don't dangle. Elsa Maxwell, writing in Vogue, says 
Captain Molyneux, who dresses her, tacks everything 
securely. She must be immaculately trim. Trailing 
draperies make any but the very thin look as big as a 
house and justify the unkind description of "trailer." 

-38- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

The Wide-Hipped Figure. To hear most women talk, 
they are all too wide in the hips. The men don't think 
so. They like a woman to look like a woman. And they 
consider hips part of her equipment. However, if you 
want to dispense with your hips, here's how you can 
do it. 

/. Raise the waist-line. This type usually has the small 
waist that goes with a comparatively flat chest. Rais- 
ing the waist-line to the floating rib, as we advised for 
the short figure, may mean increasing it a fraction of 
an inch. But it will make the hips look several inches 
smaller. Because it gives a smooth sloping line instead 
of showing the suddenly out-jutting shelf of the ac- 
tual hips. 

2. Flare the skirt straight from the hips and wear it about 
an inch longer than the prevailing style. No hobble 
skirts to grip you round the knees and throw the hips 
into relief. Then the longer you wear your gored 
skirt, within reason of course, the more fullness you 
have at the hem to belittle your hips. 

3. Wear lighter colors above the waist. A light colored 
bodice or a bright colored jacket will help to readjust 
your proportions, making the bust seem larger. While 
the darker colors below the waist will camouflage the 
hips adroitly. 

-39- 




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4. Wear thicker fabrics above the waist. A quilted satin 
waist-length blouse worn with a thin crepe skirt, or a 
wool bolero over a silk skirt, or a brief fur jacket or 
cape over a thin wool skirt, brings your proportions 
into better alignment. 

5. Build up the bust and shoulders with detail. Use gath- 
ered detail to accent the bust or a horizontally tucked 
vestee or widely spaced lapels. Wear padded shoulders 
or epaulet shoulders. Never wear raglan sleeves. But 
emphasize the top of the sleeve in some way with 
slashing or inverted pleats or medieval effects, full to 
the elbow and fitted below it. Elbow-length capes will 
broaden the shoulders too. All these devices mini- 
mize the hips. 

6. Use diagonal lines below the waist. Set the skirt onto 
the bodice in an upward point or set pockets in the 
skirt slantwise or wear a cutaway jacket, or a pointed 
bodice above a gathered dirndl skirt. 

7. Never outline the hips at their equator. Never wear a 
hip length jacket squared off at the bottom. Wear 
jackets with rounded corners which are really a vari- 
ation of the point device we mentioned just now. 
This line pointing away from the hips leading the 
eye upward toward the bodice is your basic motif. 
Use it in every way for it never fails to suit your pur- 
pose. 

8. Avoid small hats. Your hat should help your shoul- 
ders to distract the eye from your hips. Brims help 
you to distribute your weight to better advantage. 
However, your brim may be rolled off the face. Or a 

-42- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

stiff, flaring veil may be substituted for a brim, par- 
ticularly in a dinner hat. 

p. Accessories should be large. A large bag is best for 
you. And your jewelry should include necklaces and 
earrings for above the waist interest. 

ID. Fur scarfs and collars should be generously propor- 
tioned. Long-haired furs will give you better propor- 
tions; lynx or wolf collars on sports coats, fox collars 
on dress coats, silver or red fox scarfs (the color of the 
red fox is advisable) flung about your shoulders will 
broaden them in a highly desirable manner. 



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The Full-Breasted Figure. This type of figure usually 
has a large waist, too, and large upper arms, compara- 
tively slender hips and trim ankles and wrists. Now 
we told you to accent your good points only when it 
could be done without throwing bad points into re- 
lief. So: 

1. Wear nothing tight except at the wrists. Because a 
tight bodice will reveal the bust and waist. And skirts 
tight at the hips will throw the bust and waistline 
into unwelcome relief making you look unhappily 
top-heavy. Wear draped bodices so that the fullness 
seems to belong to the dress rather than to the figure 
itself. 

2. Wear loose, finger-length tuxedo or swagger jackets 
that cut up the bust and waist. The tuxedo or swag- 

-43- 






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DESIGNING WOMEN 

ger lines will reveal a panel that conveys a most flat- 
tering impression of the torso. 
5. Wear long, flared skirts. Such a skirt appearing below 
the jackets described above will give the required 
width at the base of the silhouette and take away the 
effect of teetering on an inadequate underpinning. 

4. Wear lightish stockings. Both because you're proud 
of your ankles and because light stockings add to the 
"how firm a foundation" impression. 

5. Wear narrow rectangular neck-lines. They will help 
along the slenderizing effects of the jackets. 

6. Wear high heels because they permit more skirt 
length. 

7. Wear light colored vestees to carry on with the nar- 
rowing effect below the neck-line. 

8. Raise the waist-line as much as possible. This gives a 
youthful effect. 

p. Shun belts. Indicate the waist-line with any of the de- 
vices given for the plump figure. 

10. Wear darker colors above the waist. A dark jacket 
over a print accomplishes this most effectively. 

11, Wear a medium-sized hat with upswept lines. Ob- 
viously a small hat will accent the size of the bust. 
And a large hat will contribute to the inverted tri- 
angle effect that you're trying to remedy. So yours 
should be a discreet compromise that avoids both un- 
fortunate impressions. The upward lines are desirable 
because this type of figure usually has a short neck. 
And don't let a lazy salesgirl put you into anything 
matronly. Your whole aim is to avoid being typed as 

-46- 



mt 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

a dowager figure. Don't undo all your good work on 
your figure with an awesome middle-aged hat. 

12. Mask your upper arms. Don't do it with short capes 
for they will add to the width of the bust. But raglan 
sleeves are ideal for you, and kimono sleeves set in 
with a point at the shoulder that is aimed straight at 
your neck. For evening you can wear decollete gowns 
extremely well. In fact you should wear your evening 
frocks cut exceptionally low at front, back and sides 
to cut up the torso and avoid a tight, bursting effect 
at the arms. Whenever you can, cover the upper arms. 
And one word more about your decolletage. Don't let 
it fit you too tightly in the back or it will give you a 
bulge over its edge that will ruin the effect of your 
smooth shoulder blades. On the contrary, if it fits you 
easily and casually, you can show a back that will 
make you the envy of every thin woman in the room. 

73. Wear large accessories. Because they help to dwarf 
large figures. But never wear a long necklace. Elsa 
Maxwell says her pet horror is a rope of pearls or any- 
thing else plunging over the cliff of a buxom bosom. 
And speaking of necklaces, they can help most con- 
structively to level out a dowager's hump at the back 
of the neck. Fill in the hollow above the hump with 
strands of pearls or an Egyptian flat collar necklace. 
Or wear a cut-out decolletage that covers the hump 
but reveals your back below it. 

i^. Wear your furs tuxedo fashion. Both your fur scarfs 
and the fur on your coat will be much more flattering 
worn vertically than swirling round your shoulders. 

- 47 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

^ke C^xpectant ^u 



lure 



The Expectant Figure. On this joyous occasion, even 
the slenderest woman must take a few hints from our 
discussion of the plump figure and also from the treat- 
ment of embonpoint to follow in Chapter 3. Also, 
she must consider the tendency toward a temporary 
hip-spread which is particularly noticeable in the back. 
But all this can be camouflaged adroitly as follows. 

/. Stick to dark colors, 

2. Avoid shiny or sparkling fabrics, 

5. Never wear a complete belt. 

4. Concentrate color, ornaments, etc. at the neck and 
wrists. 

5. Wear jackets or capes that match the costume. Con- 
trasting ones cut the figure awkwardly. 

6. Have your cloth jackets cut in box fashion, your fur 
ones chunky to balance the figure. 

7. Wear high or v necklines. The high ones will give you 
height. The v's will accent the poitrine which is one 
of your best points at this time. 

8. Wear lavish furs to balance the figure. 

p. Wear diagonal lines to distract the eye— surplice necks 
of course. And we have even seen a black wool suit 
whose white pin stripes ran diagonally across the 
skirt. It was worn with great success when masked by 
a long flowing coat. 

10. Wear swagger coats and suits swinging full from a 
choux collar. 

-48- 



FIGURE-ING OUT YOUR BEST LINES 

11. Wear dresses with intricate drapery twisting as only 
Vionnet can do it at the waist to fall in a graceful 
panel down the front. 

12. Wear trains or back panels gored in at the hips to 
fall in folds that mask the rear view. 

73. Wear interesting sleeves— gresLt full medieval ones 
on dinner gowns will balance the figure— or drapery 
that falls in cape fashion over the shoulder to form 
the sleeve, will broaden the shoulders. 

i^f. Wear hats that are tall or broad or both to give 
height or balance the figure or both. 

75. Wear low-heeled but interesting shoes as described 
earlier. 

16. Wear your hair piled high to give you height. 

Then go ahead and go about. Instead of sitting at 
home with an inferiority complex, carry on as usual 
and nobody will suspect the great event right up to 
the last moment. 



-49- 



clw«oC^ dUsOrJy^ :tU/»t "dU'/a^-YVxeXi^ivvt^ ^Ury^u^frw 



CHAPTER THREE 

Special Pointers for Strategic Points 

We have hinted at these principles before in discuss- 
ing the various figure types. We amplify those recom- 
mendations here and catalogue them under the various 
parts of the figure so that composite figures who do not 
fit exactly into any figure type may pick and choose de- 
tails to suit their individual needs. 



^ke S^kod Vleck 



Low neck-line, Collarless coats or capes, off-the-shoul- 
der collars on furred coats, y nerks and deep ovals and 
rectangles, scarfs worn crisscrossed in a low v, all lend 
height to a short neck. 

Clips or graduated short necklaces. Chokers live up to 
their name on this type of neck. Foreswear them firmly. 
But a clip at the base of a v neck-line or two clips at 
the corners of a square neck, or a bar pin on a square- 
necked sweater are most effective. And graduated 
pearls filling in a narrow neck-line are extremely good. 

-50- 



SPECIAL POINTERS 

5. A short bob or long hair worn off the neck-line, are 
preferable. Because a long bob or hair coiled low in 
the neck will obliterate completely what neck you 
have. 

4, Brimless hats or upturned brims, are flattering. Down- 
ward brims will seem to sit smack on your shoulders. 
While hats with height will give an illusion of a neck 
even where one barely exists. 

5. Vertical decolletages foster the illusion of height de- 
sired for this type of neck. 



^ke (JLoviq V {eck 



1. High neck-lines. Eton collars, cowl neck-lines, coif 
neck-lines, fur stoles tied tightly around the neck, 
luxurious fur collars that frame the face, ruflEs, Em- 
pire standing collars, military collars, Chinese collars, 
calla lily effects, turtle necked sweaters and scarfs tied 
in Ascot fashion or in bows, all are allies. 

2. Chokers, not long necklaces. A long necklace drags 
out this type of neck interminably. But a choker cuts 
the length and lends a decorative note as well as moral 
support. 

5. A long bob or long hair worn low at the neck. Either 
will cut the length of the neck and fill in its angles 
most gracefully. 

4. Hats that come low in the back. This device fills in 
the neck adroitly. The hat may be off the face in 

-51- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

front, providing a brim or a veil or some bit of trim- 
ming gives the neck a bit of background. 

5. Horizontal decolletages will minimize the length of 
the neck. That is, bateau necks, wide-cut square necks 
and wide ovals are the greatest possible aids. 

6. Earrings will cut the length of the neck. 

7. Dog collars mask long necks. 



^ke l-^tump V feck 



Plump necks should follow all the rules laid down for 
short necks since making the neck look longer auto- 
matically makes it look thinner. Also: 

1, Hair worn behind the ears slenderizes the neck as well 
as the face. (See Chapter 5.) 

2. Mask the dowager's hump. You can do this with curls 
or coiled hair at the back of the neck. You can do it 
with drapery tacked in place. And in the evening you 
can do it with necklaces of several strands filling in 
the hollow above the hump, or with a halter neck or a 
cut-out decolletage covering the hump but showing 
the smooth shoulder blades below it. 



^ke ^kln f/eck 



Thin necks should follow the rules for long necks when- 
ever possible and consider in addition the following 
points. 

J. Cut-out decolletages let you be daring without being 
foolhardy enough to bare all. 

-52- 



SPECIAL POINTERS 

2. Narrow decolletages cover those bothersome neck- 
bones and still give an effect of formality. 

5. Veiled decolletages will let you have your cake and 
eat it too— that is, convey a decoUetage without bar- 
ing your bones. 

4. Cowl and coif drapery cover bones gracefully. 

5. Necklaces help to camouflage neckbones. 

6. Halter necks. Many halter necks cover the collarbone 
at its most prominent points. 

J^ioplna or If { arrow S^kouiaerd 

(In a season when you want them to look broad and 
square.) 

1. Pad them. 

2. Wear lapels shooting toward the shoulder. 

5. Wear tapering sleeves; leg-o-muttons, sleeves full to 
the elbow and fitted below it, puff sleeves, etc. 

4. Wear decollete evening gowns with some sort of 
shoulder interest. 

5. Wear capes and wide lapels because they give a flat- 
tering horizontal line. 

6. Wear bateau or wide square-cut necks since they, too, 
stress the horizontal to give shoulder width. 

(jf^ls^ ^'^i^^ V neck-l jnp^^ heraiise ohvinnsly they create 
th^ ^esired illu sion of sh oulder width. 
8. Use the trick of graduated detail such as frogs, or 
braid to convey an illusion of shoulder width. 

-53- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

^auare or lA/lae J^nouiaef5 

(In a season when you want to make them look nar- 
row or sloping.) 

7. Avoid padding and epaulets. Wear raglan shoulders, 
sleeves set in below the shoulder, cap sleeves continu- 
ing from the shoulder, etc. 
2. Wear swagger type lapels, not wide triangular ones. 
5. Avoid bouffant ahove-the-elhow sleeves. No leg-o-mut- 
tons, etc. Wear kimono sleeves, sleeves belling near 
the wrist, etc. 
4. Wear off-the-shoulder decolletages or halters to soften 
the shoulder line. No straps, ever. 



^ne ^iat L^kedt 



1. Adapt the peasant bodice motif. Nip in the waist. Use 
lacing if you like to stress the tapering effect. And use 
the double curve of a peasant bodice to enhance your 
contours. Also use Rule Eight under Narrow Shoul- 
ders. 

2. Use detail to give you contours. Shirring will do it 
applied both at the shoulders and under the breasts, 
or in a vertical line between the breasts. Other devices 
are darts below the breasts, or high slanting pockets. 
Leave the plain bodices severely alone. 

5. Wear interesting neck-lines: the double curve we 
spoke of earlier, an inverted neck-line narrow at the 
neck and ending in a wide flattering curve, or an oval 

-54- 



SPECIAL POINTERS 

neck-line filled in with crisscrossing fans of lace or 
mousseline. 

Use heavier fabric to increase your bust measure- 
merits: A velveteen peasant bodice, a quilted satin 
fencing jacket, a scarf tucked into a low neck all will 
do their bit for you. 

Use ruffles to increase your bust. Wear ruffled blouses 
and fichus and flounces. 



^ne j^erfect ^ke&t 



1, Wear plain tight bodices. Get the required fullness 
as unobtrusively as possible. 

2. Wear one striking ornament such as a clip or pearls. 
5. Wear Empire decolletages. You are the only type who 

can and you might as well make the most of it. 



^kin ^^t 



rm6 

1. Never wear tight fitting sleeves. Wear draped sleeves, 
medieval sleeves, page-boy sleeves or slit sleeves. 

2. Never wear sleeveless dresses. Even your tennis dresses 
must have a cap sleeve or a butterfly sleeve flaring 
from inverted pleats. 

5. Never wear elbow sleeves hanging limply. Your arms 
are smaller than standard size. So standard sleeves 
will never fit properly. You can adjust short sleeves in 
five minutes by sewing on snaps that will take a reef 
in them at the cuff and make them fit tightly halfway 

-55- 



^^ 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

from shoulder to elbow, thus achieving a most flatter- 
ing puff. 
^. Wear covered shoulder decolletages that hide your 
upper arms beneath a circular flounce of lace or tossed 
back winged victory drapery or a cutaway capelet or 
a Flemish coif effect. 



cJLame ^>v/ 



Tm6 

1. Never wear tight fitting sleeves. But don't wear bouf- 
fant ones. Rather wear raglans or kimono sleeves or 
medieval sleeves. 

2. Never wear sleeveless dresses. They will make you 
look even more undressed, if that's possible, than they 
do the thin woman. But your evening sleeves should 
never be unattached drapery. Dropped sleeves for eve- 
ning are good. And your sports sleeves should hang 
free in cape fashion from the shoulders. 



\^ona w>^/ 



rm5 

J. Taper your sleeves to foreshorten your arms. 

2. Cut the length with cuffs reaching nearly to the el- 
bow. You can do this with contrasting color or tucks 
or buttons or a deep cuff flaring in beveled lines. 

5. Wear deep gauntlet gloves in a color that contrasts 

with your sleeves. . ^'hi\ 

ff,)Wear bracelet length sleeves and bracelets, 

5. In the evening wear few rings but wear bracelets half- 
way up both arms. 

-56- 



SPECIAL POINTERS 



J^hod ^^r 



1. Wear your long sleeves as long as possible. 

2. Bring them to a point over the back of the hand. 

5. Avoid any appearance of cuffs except narrow edgings 
of white. 

4. Wear your short sleeves very short. 

5. In the evening wear but one very narrow bracelet on 
each arm but wear as many rings as are compatible 
with good taste. 



ZJklyi \AJnds 



yiiP 



I. Wear a collection of clinking bracelets on your right 
arm. 

n your left arm, wear your watch below the wrist- 
bone, to give a less bony effect. 

5. Avoid bracelet sleeves. 

4. Fit your sleeves tightly at the wrist. Wide cuffs make 
the wrists look all the thinner. 

cJLame ^J^anas 

1. Wear dark gloves. Remember dark colors give an il- 
lusion of smallness. 

2. Don't wear stitched gloves. The seams add to the ac- 
tual size of the glove and the stitching calls attention 
to it. 

5. Wear large rings. They will make your hands look 
small by comparison. 

-57- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

1. Don't wear rings with stones that cover a whole joint. 
This makes your hands look still shorter. 

2. Do wear thin gloves like suede rather than capeskin 
to make your fingers look as slender as possible and 
consequently as long as possible. 

5. Wear long mousquetaire gloves wrinkled at the wrist. 
This will enhance the length of your hands quite sur- 
prisingly. 

4. Wear your nail polish down to the tip of the nail. 



cJLamc ..^nkle 



es 

1. Don't wear shiny stockings. 

2. Do wear darkish stockings. 

5. Don't wear anything hut the sheerest stockings. 

4. Don't wear colored or figured sports stockings. 

5. Do wear clocks. 

6. Wear shoes with straps around the ankle rather than 
across the instep. 

7. Wear high heels. They shrink the ankle muscles. 

cJLarae ^eet 

1. Never wear light colored shoes. 

2. Never wear plain vamp shoes. 

5. Wear high heels whenever possible. Arching the foot 
takes up the length. 

-58- 



SPECIAL POINTERS 

4. Wear open toes for evening. 

5. Wear square toes for daytime. 

6. Wear sandals cut down at the side. 

7. Don't wear pumps, unless there is enough detail (con- 
trasting toe, punchwork, etc.) to cut up the front of 
the foot. 



^ke oLarae {/[/aidt-oLL 



1, Don't wear a colorful belt because you don't want to 
accent your waist. 

2. If your belt contrasts, it must be darker than your 
dress. 

5. Don't wear a complete belt— wear a hide-and-seek 
belt or a weskit button effect or simply indicate the 
waist by a clip or buckle or graduated panel. 

4. Never wear a wide belt. It will make you look wide 
too. 

5. No belt at all is better yet. Depend whenever possible 
on nipped-in princess lines or graduated panels indi- 
cating the waist without outlining it. 

6. Use the vertical point we suggested for the full-hipped 
figure, for it helps to slenderize the waist as well. 

7. Let in fullness above the waist. It will minimize the 
waist-line by comparison. 



^ke J^Luauback 



I. Raise the waist-line in front and curve it into the 
sway in back. This will make the sway look like a nor- 
mal figure. 

-59- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

2, Wear straight hacked jackets, 

5. Wear reefers or Clark Gable backs. The short par- 
tial belt set just above the sway gains the same effect 
as Rule 1. 

4. Wear bustle effects and peplums to fill in the sway. 

(Lmponpoini (iummiedj 

1. Wear jackets with rounded corners to cut up the un- 
desired line diagonally and thereby distract the eye 
from it. We mentioned this for wide hips. It is equally 
good for tummies. 

2. Wear single breasted jackets to avoid two thicknesses 
over the brisket. 

5. Wear dirndl skirts to make the fullness seem part of 
the dress, not of you. 

^. Wear weskit effects. They distract the eye with diago- 
nal lines by the same principle as rule 2. 

5. Wear frocks with drapery twisted and caught at the 
waist to fall in a panel down the front. 



f^erfeci ^j4ip5 



1. Wear an evening silhouette molded from waist to 
the knees to emphasize your slenderness. 

2. Wear also for evening a garland of flowers low on 
your hips. Nobody less beautifully streamlined than 
yourself will dare to copy it. 

5. Wear a link-buttoned tailleur for daytime with a 
jacket fitting like a glove over the hips. 

-60- 



cK««o;«w0r dUtkc^ ^ttvot "Juia^rrvaXltivva Ijf^^ uLin\ 



CHAPTER FOUR 

How Not to Be Your Age 

In this chapter, we shall assume you have an average 
figure. Large figures should also see Chapter 2 to shed 
pounds and consequently years. Whenever instructions 
conflict, follow the reducing suggestions. 



c 



oirmre5 



1. Never wear shingled hair. It adds ten years. Because 
by making the head look smaller, it makes the figure 
appear heavier. Also it makes the neck seem thicker, 
always a sign of age, and reveals whatever hump there 
may be at the back. Instead of shingled hair, wear 
short hair close to the head, ending in a roll of curls 
at the back and curls rolled back from the face in 
front. Or wear long hair coiled low at the back of the 
neck. 

2. Never wear the hair parted in the middle and drawn 
down on either side. This emphasizes drooping lines 
in the face. 

-6i~ 



wmmmm 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

5. Part the hair on one side. This gives a soft, becoming 
line. 

^. Lift the hair off the forehead. That is, comb it back 
diagonally before bringing it forward into soft dips 
at the temples. This lifts every line in the face. 

5. Never wear hard, tight waves. This seems to deepen 
lines. 

6. Never wear a bun on top of the head or flat at the 
back. This is always associated with old ladies. 

7. Don't wear your hair very long. The Seven Suther- 
land Sisters have had their day. It is no longer smart 
to be able to sit on your hair. If you don't care for 
bobbed hair, cut your long tresses to shoulder length 
and coil them low at the neck. This will do several 
things for you. The cutting makes the hair thicker. 
The coiffure will show the modeling of the head to 
advantage and minimize a dowager's hump. And hav- 
ing less hair will cut down your head size so you won't 
be forced to wear the matronly millinery that is all 
the stores offer for large headsizes. 

8. Never dye your hair. Tint it. The pigmentation of 
the skin changes as the hair turns gray, so you would 
have to dye your skin as well as your hair to get a 
harmonious effect. Dyed hair accentuates every sign 
of age in the face cruelly and needlessly. 

WaLUp 

I. Never wear rouge over wrinkles or hollows since it 
accentuates them. 

-62- 



HOW NOT TO BE YOUR AGE 

2. Wear rouge sparingly. Because it stands out more on 
older skins on account of the loss of pigmentation 
that comes with age. 

^. Bring the rouge up from the cheeks blending it out 
over the pouches under the eyes. This sinks them and 
takes away the bloodless look. 

^. Don't wear a white powder even if you have white 
hair. It will make your rouge stand out in ghastly 
fashion. Your skin is paler than in youth, but it still 
has rose or creamy tints. Match them carefully. 

5. Pat on powder without moving the puff. Drawing the 
puff across the face makes powder catch in wrinkles 
and results in visible streaks. 

6. Don't he afraid of lipstick. 

7. Blot out wrinkles and double chins with powder 
foundations, see Chapter 6. 

8. Make up your neck along with your face. A youthful 
face rising from an aging neck is a dead give away. 
(Neck make-up will include powder foundation and 
powder.) 



U4at5 



1. Use veils instead of brims to flatter your eyes. Or else 
have your brims softly undulating. 

2. Don't wear deep crowns. They'll date you as a con- 
temporary of Queen Mary. Make sure your crowns, 
like your coiffures, stress the modeling of your head. 

5. Wear a touch of white or color near the face. Your 
skin needs it. 

-63- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

4. Tilt your hats. In some mysterious way this subtracts 
years. 

5. Don't wear forbidding bows or feathers. They are 
old-hat. 



VIech-cJLl 



ine6 

1. Wear boas or scarfs tied around your neck, or soft 
upstanding ruffles. This helps the neck which is the 
first feature to show age. 

2. Avoid fichus or draperies with shawl effects. They are 
old-ladyish by long association. 

5. Never wear a surplice line. It's definitely matronly. 
4. Take care to cover a dowager's hump. 



^iikouetti 



e5 

1. Lift the waist-line as much as possible. This has an 
effect of lifting the figure. 

2. Don't wear a skirt longer than the current length. 



oioi^s 

1. Don't wear unrelieved black. Wear a touch of color 
or white near the face. This goes for dresses quite as 
much as for hats. Your skin needs color. 

2. Don't wear brown or beige with gray hair unless you 
have exceptionally striking brown eyes. Instead wear 
gray or navy. 

-64- 



■M 



HOW NOT TO BE YOUR AGE 

3. Wear black-and-white or clear colors if your hair is 
white, 

4. With gray hair wear brilliant colors or dusty pastels. 



S^noed and ^ toe hi 



2ina5 

J, Wear high heels. 

2. Don't wear pointed toes. They accentuate bumpy 

feet. 
5. Don't wear broad straps over the instep. They give a 

solid, settled look. 
4. Wear dull finished silk stockings in reasonably light 

shades— never black. 



^. 



cce6ione6 

J. Don't wear metal-rimmed spectacles. Shell frames are 

smarter. And oxford glasses are smartest of all. Take 

off your glasses whenever you can. 
2. Don't carry a bag with handles unless it*s a swagger 

bag. 
5. Wear interesting gloves either long and flared or very 

short. 

4. Don't wear long necklaces. They give a drooping line. 

5. Don't wear rings if your hands are bumpy. 

6. Do wear bracelets. They distract the eye from the 
hands. 

7. Don't wear quaint, old-fashioned jewelry. 

8. Do wear earrings. 
p. And a boutonniere. 

-65- 



ck««oC^ dUitMj^ *U/it "cl<) o^rwil^ii/i^ 'LrL.uLirw 



CHAPTERFIVE 

Disporting Tourself 

Lady Olympic champions and others who take their 
sports in dead earnest should skip this chapter, since 
they will dress for comfort, freedom and efficiency 
rather than with an eye to the gallery. As a matter of 
fact, they are likely to have rangy, boyish figures any- 
way, so that these words of warning scarcely apply to 
them. Now that we've weeded out those who will dis- 
agree most violently with our remarks, let's get on with 
the discussion. 

Use discretion when you wear the pants. This section 
is written at the earnest and repetitious request of so 
many men we have lost count. Men told us a lot we had 
never dreamed of about trousers. And, after all, who 
should know the subject better than they? 

Now women resent being ruled out of these garments. 
They say men object to women in pants because they 
feel their rights are somehow invaded. We think that 
point of view would be exploded if a woman were given 
an opportunity to walk down the street behind herself. 
She often thinks her neighbor hasn't the figure. But she's 

-66- 



DISPORTING YOURSELF 

never convinced about herself until she sees herself in a 
home-made movie. 

However, don't leap to conclusions. We are not going 
to prohibit trousers altogether. Other masculine gar- 
ments have inspired successful fashion trends because 
they have been adapted intelligently. Look at our mili- 
tary coats and capes. We have adapted them cleverly to 
our curves. Because those curves were where we could 
see them. The intelligent thing to do seems to be to sit 
down and talk to a man about trousers. Which is just 
what we did. 

With an army officer, we observed the apparitions at 
a riding school. True, most of them had gone in for 
riding to reduce. But they blithely disregarded, the spec- 
tacles they presented in the immediate present. Said the 
army officer, "Their breeches don't fit them around the 
waist. They use their belts like gathering strings. They'd 
certainly do better if they went to a men's tailor." 

Asked how come, he made this enlightening state- 
ment: "Most women's designers have a peculiar idea of 
women's anatomy, perhaps because they haven't had 
much experience in fitting legs. They believe that wom- 
en's legs begin at the knee. And at the knee is where 
they begin the trousers in pajamas, riding breeches, 
slacks, even ski pants. It's more because of that that 
women look awkward in trousers than because of any- 
thing else. Men would look just as ungainly in women's 
trousers." 

He passed over the difficulties above the waistline 
with the sweeping statement that shirts would be a great 

-67- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

improvement over sweaters in most cases. Having 
reached the safer ground of collars, he remarked "Have 
you any idea how men fuss about the height of a collar?'* 
He went on to explain. "You must put this in your 
book. All our shirts may look alike. But actually the 
height of the collar varies considerably with the individ- 
ual. One man may want to cover an Adam's apple. 
Another man in a collar of that height might look like a 
snapping turtle." 

Didn't we tell you to consider the length of your neck 
when choosing a neck-line? But we had no idea the men 
had got there ahead of us and put all sorts of subtleties 
in what we had innocently supposed were quite regi- 
mented clothes. No wonder we make a fizzle of wearing 
masculine garments, when first, we haven't the figures 
and second, we don't know the fine points of their tailor- 
ing. Frankly, we weren't going to mention riding clothes 
at all, feeling that there was a law or something that 
governed their cut and what could you do about it. Now 
that we've found each man is a law unto himself, why 
shouldn't we, who pride ourselves on being individual- 
ists, see this thing through until we have shirts and 
breeches that make us look quite as well tailored as 
men? 

But our officer was uttering more pearls of wisdom. 
"Do you see that slightly bow-legged young lady? She 
would look better in jodhpurs because boots make any- 
body look a bit bowlegged. They fit snugly to the inside 
of the leg and add several inches at the outside. So they 
are becoming only to knock-kneed people." 

- 68 - 



DISPORTING YOURSELF 

Another time, we were talking to a designer. We were 
at the beach when he made a most surprising and rather 
comforting observation. "The better a woman's figure, 
the worse she looks in trousers." Asked why, he ex- 
plained, "A woman should have a small waist. Well, the 
smaller her waist, the queerer she looks in shorts or 
slacks." He agreed, of course, that pleats and culottes 
helped the thigh somewhat, but stuck to it that skirts 
were far more graceful and infinitely better suited to the 
feminine form divine. 

Pleats, he declared, are no panacea, although they do 
help the thigh. Because they tend to make you look 
broad in the beam. As for culottes, it is a popular fallacy 
to suppose that they are as becoming as skirts. They 
aren't and they never will be. Because a divided skirt 
lets in fullness at the front and back rather than over 
the hips. So they, like pleated shorts, don't do much for 
the derriere. 

Our frank and earnest critic insisted it was stark mad- 
ness for women with definitely feminine figures to go in 
for all these trouser effects when dirndls and beach coats 
were so much more appealing. As for the willowy crea- 
tures who really can wear slacks and shorts with an air, 
providing they are meticulously tailored, he made us 
promise to implore them to spend a bit more money and 
have their tailoring done right. When it came to slacks 
and shorts he insisted tailoring could make or break the 
slenderest figure. 

"But," we argued, "suppose one of these figures you 
so charitably call feminine is on a boat or climbing a 

-69- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

mountain. You wouldn't have her risk life and limb 
just because of a silly prejudice, would you?" 

To this he* replied, "I thought we were talking about 
fashions as such. I might trek through the jungle half 
naked. But I wouldn't recommend that as a fashion. 
However, on that boat you mention or that mountain, 
the lady could wear dark trousers. And no doubt the 
temperature would permit her to wear a coat." 

So there you have it. We don't look as well in culottes 
as we think we do. Many of us though, could look well 
in culottes, slacks, shorts, and jodhpurs if we had them 
more carefully fitted. Also, just like the men, we look 
better with our coats than without them. 

Another affliction at summer resorts is "frogs* legs." 
Everybody dreads those first awful days at the beach 
when women's legs look boiled that white! They have 
the same effect as the white cotton stockings the players 
at Wimbledon fought such a battle to shed. That is, 
being white, they give a large-legged look. And they're 
infinitely worse than stockings because they're part of 
you. Consequently when they don't match your arms 
and face, they make you look piebald, like a calico 
horse. 

Fortunately our alert beauty people offer two rem- 
edies: tan leg make-up to help you over the first days 
and ease you into a tan of your own (because they claim 
you can tan through it) and sun rooms where you can 
tan in private under sun lamps and burst upon the 
beach with everything all of a piece so that you don't 

-70- 



DISPORTING YOURSELF 

look half-baked in spots. They do say that Marina,' 
Duchess of Kent, has been known to wear one of these 
leg make-ups and dispense with stockings in summer. 
Which is interesting, if true, because any leg make-up 
that can get by the English court must certainly be 
modesty itself. 

Another phase of this same trouble is the discrepancy 
between your tan and your decolletage. We beg you to 
choose a bathing suit of the same cut as your evening 
dresses, or better yet take time to tan under a sun lamp 
where you can let down your straps and do a thorough 
job. Halter necks were designed to help this difficulty. 
But they, too, leave their mark unless you alternate a 
halter-necked suit with another that permits you to tan 
where the halter did not. Or again, tan make-up will 
come to your rescue. 

A third manifestation of this tanning problem is the 
white patch across the eyes, left by sun glasses, that 
makes you look owlish or queerly goggle-eyed. We don't 
recommend lying in the sun without glasses. But you 
must do something. There are copper eye shadows, you 
know. Blend them into your tan and wear your regular 
shadow over them. The second shadow is necessary 
near the eyes to avoid a red-eyed look. 

And the fourth tanning difficulty, that of how to tan 
your feet while wearing beach shoes, is solved quite 
nicely by those open-air fishnet arrangements that pro- 
tect nothing but the sole of your foot, as desired. 

However, perhaps you're one of those people who 
pride themselves on not tanning. If so, there are prepa- 

-71- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

rations you can use to avoid browning. Though per- 
sonally we prefer a tan unless you are well covered by a 
long beach coat. If the aim today is to look natural, white 
skins at the beach are taboo because they're unnatural. 
The setting is all wrong for them. The blazing sands, 
the intense blue of the water, the crude native colors of 
the bathing fashions all call for tanned skins. 

Next let's turn our attention to the tennis court. If 
you're out for just a gentle game, you may prefer to 
wear a dress instead of shorts. Tennis dresses have come 
a long way since the days when they were rectangles of 
cloth with fullness set in at the hips by gathers or pleats. 
Those were about the most unflattering garments ever 
conceived. But today we still see dresses cut off squarely 
at the shoulders. Someone said they give a washerwoman 
effect. We will go further and declare they make a 
woman look like either a drain pipe or a washtub. 
Carrying the dress even an inch over the shoulder gives 
an infinitely better line. Or else the neck should be 
halter style. The newest version of the halter, ending in 
a choir boy collar, is delightful for everyone but the 
narrow shouldered figure. 

Now about letting in fullness. You can have a yoke of 
some kind, or a halter. And for the skirt you can have 
long radiating umbrella pleats or inverted pleats fore 
and aft, or a dirndl skirt. 

If you're going at tennis seriously, shorts or culottes 
will save you a lot of embarrassment. Incidentally, the 
rule about wearing white cotton or linen (not silk) on 

-72- 



DISPORTING YOURSELF 

the tennis court should include lingerie too. Because 
blush rose skivvies glimpsed under a white ensemble 
are just that much more conspicuous than white ones. 

Tennis also suggests that modern phenomenon, the 
eye shade. It started on the tennis court but has secured 
a much bigger place in the sun. In fact, it is fast sup- 
planting the sports hat. Of course we're talking about 
the new eye shades. The first eye shades, were a hideous 
shape and were faced with, of all things, green. So they 
were just as unflattering as a green parasol whose green 
shadows give a seasick effect. But the new eye shades 
with squared visors, look like provocative little bonnets. 
And we doubt if you'll find one in green. However, 
think twice before you buy a white one. Think, is your 
skin clear enough to stand the competition? Suntan 
doesn't matter. White will afford a flattering contrast. 
But naturally swarthy skins should avoid white. Also the 
glare of a white shade may hurt your eyes. Red, too, is 
hard on the eyes. You have to pick a becoming color 
and a soft one. Remember, yellow is almost as restful to 
the eyes as green. And a soft rose or blue or violet or 
wine will have none of the dazzling effect of red. So 
choose the one of these colors that is right for you, see 
Chapter 7, and your eye shade will do double duty. 
It will protect your eyes and keep your hair from blow- 
ing. It's ideal for motoring and boating, because it is 
cooler than a beret and shades your eyes quite as well 
as a cartwheel or a sailor. 

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■MH 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Turning our attention to golf, we have just one pet 
peeve to rail against— the ugly practice of wearing a 
pull-over sweater girdled by a wide contrasting belt. 
This has never been known to flatter anyone within the 
memory of man. It generally makes a woman look like a 
beanpole or a mattress tied round with a strap. Oh, you 
may be able to get away with it if your figure is ideal. 
But even then, you'll look so much better in a cardigan 
buttoned below the waist and open above it. The belt- 
lessness gives a long, princess line. And buttoning the 
sweater in this manner gives a slender-hipped contour 
that hints at a waist without actually spanning it. Wear 
your cardigan over a twin sweater or a linen blouse and 
you'll look trim as the Duchess of Marlborough whether 
you wear slacks for golfing, as she does, or culottes or a 
skirt. 

And now for bathing suits. If you're not quite a mod- 
ern Venus, they still needn't be your Waterloo. But 
you'll have to learn how to pick them. Wide-hipped 
women lament the extra thickness around the hips 
wished on them by a one-piece bathing suit with an 
attached skirt. To compensate for this, they should in- 
sist upon carefully arranged fullness above the waist and 
a good deal of strap interest, to distract the eye. Also if 
they choose thin fabrics the skirt won't add so much 
thickness. 

Large ladies will find themselves fading into the 
scenery much more easily in neutral prints than in 
vivid, solid colors. Though dark solid colors are best of 

-74- 



DISPORTING YOURSELF 

all. If this sounds dull, consider the exciting contrast of 
a black or nigger brown suit against a terra cotta tan. 
Silks of course will cling with no discretion whatsoever. 
Make sure that they have fullness well tacked down, so 
that the suit will hold its lines even when wet. And 
when you wear silk, consider more carefully than usual 
the question, to bra or not to bra. 

If, on the other hand, you want curves, get the thick- 
est, nubby knitted wool suit you can find, in a bright 
color. 

About playsuits with additional skirts; we've never 
yet seen a ready-made one that was satisfactory. The 
shorts under the skirt are apt to make you look bulgy. 
And the bias-cut seldom fits right around the waist with- 
out a lot of alteration. Personally, we think it's much 
better to wear a brief little beach coat that just covers 
the shorts and take time out to change to a beach dress 
before going to the village. Or you can slip over the 
shorts loose sailcloth slacks or denim dungarees or cover- 
alls that aren't supposed to fit very closely. 

Another question that bobs up about playsuits is 
shorts and shirt or a one-piece suit? If you have any 
tendency toward a swayback, pick the one-piece suit. 
For the waistband of the shorts will snuggle down into 
the sway revealing it for all the world to see. While a 
one-piece suit with the waist-line curving low in the back 
and high in the front will correct this. 

As for sports shoes, most tennis clubs won't let you 
near the court in anything that has the faintest suspicion 

-75- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

of a heel. They hold out rigidly for sneakers. However, 
you can sneak in with tie sneakers like a child's dancing* 
school slippers or the fishnet affairs we mentioned ear- 
lier for the beach. Neither has any heel to speak of. But 
both have considerable soul. And their low cut compen- 
sates for the tendency white shoes have to make the feet 
look large. 

Golfing ladies may give thanks daily for ghillies. 
Their round toes take away the illusion of length 
usually associated with low heels. And their picturesque 
lacings tied high round the ankle, correct the tendency 
low heels have to widen the ankle. Another foreshort- 
ener and ankle-slimmer-downer is the monk shoe with 
its high instep. The square toe compensates for the 
plain vamp and the ankle line is grace itself. 



-76- 



cJ(i««o^««^ ctdtMju* Xli\fit 'jLtTarrvstX^MA^ <gtfU bi«U 



CHAPTER SIX 

Capitalizing Tour Face Value 

Just as carefully chosen costumes can bring out the 
best points of your figure and camouflage its short- 
comings, so coiffures, make-up and millinery can ideal- 
ize your face. Again certain principles of line can create 
optical illusions that are almost beyond belief. 

First we must decide as we did with the figure what 
is the ideal. Most artists agree the ideal face is oval— or 
better yet heart-shaped. If you have a peaked hairline, 
by all means make the most of it. 

We shall discuss four fundamental types of faces— 
and three profile types which must be considered too. 
(If you have any doubt as to which type is yours, con- 
sult a hairdresser who can consider you objectively.) 

But before analyzing these types, let us formulate a 
few general rules about make-up and coifiEures. 



11- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



Ljenerai /\uie5 for 
J'iattenna the ^ace 



\ 



J. Hair at the sides of the face widens it. 

2, Bangs and dips on the forehead shorten the face. 

5. Dips on a level with the eye narrow the face at the 

eyeline. Nobody can stand this except women with 

too widely spaced eyes. 

4. A central part lengthens the face and accents the 
nose. 

5. Never draw the hair down diagonally from a central 
part or you will look old-ladyish. Always lift it at the 
temples. 

6. Drawing the hair down diagonally from a side part 
gives a harsh, unbecoming line to any face, 

7. Hard, set waves are not flattering to anybody. 

8. Large or heavy features need loose waves with no 
curls. 

p. Thin faces need soft, fluffy coiffures. 

10. Brows plucked to a thin line make the eyes look 

small and the face flat and expressionless. 
I. Unless the brows do something outrageous like 

growing across the nose, pluck none but straggling 

hairs. 
12, In most cases, the brows should start just above the 

corner of the eye nearest the nose. 
75. If the eyes are too near together, begin the brows a 

little further from the nose and mascara only the 

outer lashes; those furthest from the nose. 
14. Never bead the lashes. It gives a doll-like stare. 
75. Eye shadow below the eye will make you look ill. 

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li 



CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 

i6. Graduate your eye shadow from lid to brow. Have 
it heaviest on the lid and faintest near the brow. 

ly. Never put on rouge in a circle, because that, too, 
gives a doll-like effect. Applying rouge with the fin- 
gers makes it easier to get the contour you want. 

i8. Always carry rouge around the outside of the cheek 
so that no white edge is left unrouged. 

/p. Take care to carry lipstick well inside the lips so 
that no discrepancy will show when you smile. 

20. Avoid a Cupid's bow mouth. Today the ideal upper 
lip is a double arch repeating the curves of the brows 
and the hair peak, if any. 

21. Don't try too hard to remake your mouth. This can 
be done successfully only on the screen. You can, 
however, subdue a large mouth by rouging it not 
quite to the edge, or accent a small mouth by making 
it up fairly full. 

Now for our different face types and profile types. 
Most faces fall into four groups: oval, round, square and 
long. Other classifications are really subdivisions of 
these four main classes. 

For each type of face we give you basic principles for 
coiffures, make-up and millinery. Naturally your hat 
must complement your coiffure. Any good hairdresser 
will take the hat you're wearing into consideration 
when he does your hair. But don't worry too much about 
this because if your hair suits your face and your hat 
does too, they're pretty apt to suit each other. The main 
trouble is to get a becoming hat so we've included sug- 
gestions for, not specific styles, but general millinery 
effects in this analysis. 

-79- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 




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Examples: Gladys Swarthout, Dolores del Rio, 

This lucky woman has the ideal face. So you need 
only take care not to distort your perfect contours with 
fantastic hats and erratic coiffures. 

You are stark, staring mad if you narrow your beauti- 
ful, wide-sweeping forehead with side bangs or dips. 
And you're just tossing away your birthright if you let 
your hair stick out awkwardly at the cheeks. 

You can wear dramatically simple coiffures or looser 
ones if you prefer, providing they follow the excellent 
lines of your face. A center part is most effective for the 
oval face, probably because its severe simplicity calls 
attention to your perfect features. 

Because every line of this type's face should be oval, 

-80- 



CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 

you may touch up your brows a bit— just enough to 
give them a low, oval arch. 

An all too common error of this type is to rouge the 
cheeks smack in the middle. This narrows the face and 
leaves that awkward edge of white we mentioned ear- 
lier. Note how the rouge in the right-hand sketch is ap- 
plied well away from the nose and extends around the 
curve of the cheek. 

But you really don't need rouge at all because you're 
blessed with such perfect contours that there's nothing 
to correct. So rouge with you may be a matter of taste. 
If you'd like to look exotic, you would do well to leave 
it off. 

Your mouth, too, needs no special correcting, being 
so well placed. But you may try to idealize it a bit as 
we suggested in the general rules for flattering the face. 

Now when it comes to millinery, the oval face can 
wear almost anything. But if you're clever, you will 
stick to hats that enhance the oval contours— turbans, 
halos, close-fitting models generally, suit you to perfec- 
tion. Off-the-face models are especially good for the oval 
face because it usually has a peaked hairline, and that's 
always something to be proud of. 

In short, you are what everyone else is trying to be 
so you need only take care to point up your natural 
beauty. Other women less favored by fortune are likely 
to take more pains with their faces— and may actually 
outstrip you if you are over-confident and careless. So 
look to your laurels! 

-81- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 




^ke f\ound ^ace 
Examples: Sylvia Sidney, Princess Juliana of Holland, 

How to make a round face look oval? Lengthen it and 
then try for width at the top. 

Then you certainly won't wear the hair fluffed out at 
the cheeks. And you won't cut down the length with 
bangs or narrow the forehead with dips. No, you'll 
draw the hair back behind the ears and off the forehead 
and build it up at the temples. A center part is good 
because it lengthens the face. Often a round face has a 
small nose. In that case this same center part will give 
that insignificant feature much-needed prominence. 

Often, too, this type has for brows tiny, rather straight 
dabs that accent the roundness of cheeks and chin. A 
round-faced woman can solve this by penciling the 
brows as shown in our right-hand sketch in a sort of 

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CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 

modification of Marlene Dietrich's one-time winged 
effect. This gives you gratifying eye width and ovalizes 
your face remarkably. 

As we said before, no one should wear round spots of 
rouge. That goes especially for the round face which 
should subdue round lines wherever possible— your 
cheeks are quite round enough already. But you can 
taper them by applying the rouge as diagrammed— 
beginning it low and quite near the nose and extending 
it as always around the curve of the cheek. 

In making up your mouth, avoid a round, pouting 
effect. Keep your lips fairly thin and delicate. This will 
not only eliminate round lines; it will make the mouth 
seem wider, too. And that will make the chin seem 
narrower and rather more pointed— like the oval-faced 
type. 

Hats for the round face should be tall to give you 
face length. Straight lines are out because they empha- 
size your curves, and round lines are out for the same 
reason. That leaves dashing little caps like the one in 
our right-hand sketch, tilted well askew. Their diagonal 
lines will break up the perfect circle of your face and 
their decided tilt will leave enough of your upswept 
coiffure showing to imply actual face length. 

Also, quite naturally, the round face should shun 
button earrings and chokers. 

Do all this and your face will never look round at all 
except in the privacy of your dressing room or your 
beauty salon when you have scrubbed off your make-up 
and let down you^ hair. 

/ -83- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 




^ke ^auaf*e ^a 



ace 

Examples: Constance Bennett ^ The Duchess of Windsor. 

What bothers you most is your square jaw. The right 
coiffure can make it do a marvelous disappearing act. 

First of all, no dips or bangs for you because they 
shorten your face and make it squarer than ever. 

Next, if you lift the hairline at the temples into two 
pronounced corners, this will make the jaw seem less 
square by contrast. The Duchess of Windsor has re- 
cently discovered this trick. 

Then either a center part or a low side part can be 
worn with great success by this type of face, providing 
the hairline is squared off as described above. 

Finally the square face must never crop the hair short 

-84- 



CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 

at the sides leaving the bare face hanging out with that 
determined jaw well in evidence, as you see it in the 
left-hand sketch. On the other hand, a long bob will 
obliterate that jawline completely. 

Now this type usually has straight brows. We don't 
advise lifting them bodily because Nature designs brows 
to follow the bony structure of the face. And elevating 
them so drastically gives the painful look of a real face- 
lifting job. But you can, by discreet plucking or pencil- 
ing, or a little of both, leave those brows at their nat- 
ural level and yet get a suggestion of a low arch. 

The square face's rouge should be applied very much 
like the round faced type's. This may sound strange. 
But actually the problem here is much the same. This 
face, too, needs length. And so we start the rouge low 
and near the nose and extend it well over the offending 
jaw. Never let anyone induce you to dab a bit of rouge 
on your chin. Because this shortens the face. 

The square face is apt to have a straight, thin mouth. 
But curves should be applied discreetly and not too 
fulsomely or they will shorten and widen the face. 

Millinery for the square face should never be flat, 
naturally. This type, like the round face, needs height. 
But you must get it differently. Those soft, floppy brims 
pulled down diagonally in the Garbo manner are par- 
ticularly flattering. This motif need not be confined to 
sports hats. Even a dinner hat can get the same swoop- 
ing effect. 

The square-faced woman who tries out these prin- 
ciples will, we think, get from the shops something far 
better than her former square deal. 

-85- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



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Examples: Norma Shearer^ Beatrice Lillie. 

What is wrong with the picture at the left? Every- 
thing. We told you thin faces needed soft, fluffy coif- 
fures. The best thing for this woman is a sort of halo of 
combed out curls extending just to the cheekbones. 
This gives the face an entirely new contour, providing 
the necessary width at the top to turn that drawn out 
effect into a graceful oval. 

Furthermore, this type of face should never wear a 
center part because, as we said earlier, that accentuates 
length. But a fairly high side part slanting diagonally is 
most flattering. 

Often this type of face has chicken-coop eyebrows. 

-86- 



MM 



CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 

They can be brought down a bit by removing the peak 
and thereby creating an oval arch at the natural brow 
level. 

Wear your rouge well away from the nose and keep it 
at the cheekbone level. We told you how rouge sinks 
the place where it is applied. And locating it below the 
cheekbones, as in the left-hand sketch, gives a thin face 
a hollow-cheeked, lean and hungry look. 

And there's another thing about rouge for this type. 
This is the only sort of face that should wear rouge on 
the chin. As a matter of fact, you should never forget a 
faint dab of it there because it has a shortening effect. 

As for the mouth, the fuller it can be made up, the 
better because the more space it takes up vertically, the 
shorter the whole face will appear. 

Now obviously, the long face should never wear tall 
hats— even if they're the rage of the moment. We hope 
our left-hand sketch has proved that point without fur- 
ther words on the subject. On the contrary, horizontal 
hats with a slight diagonal feeling— things that give 
width at the top of the head and have the same mislead- 
ing diagonal line we recommended for the hair parting 
—are excellent. And hats that are fairly well oflE the face 
to allow free scope for the softening influence of the 
coiffure are most becoming. 

Naturally the long face should never make the mis- 
take of wearing long earrings. As you may imagine, they 
will drag out its length interminably. 

If your face is inclined to be longish, do try these 
ideas. We think you will find they are— literally— short- 
cuts to beauty. 

-87- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



[-^rohie 



Perfect profiles need consider only the rules given for 
the full face. 

The perfect profile, of course, is one in a fairly 
straight line from brow to chin and broken into three 
equal parts by the brow and the tip of the nose. 

But there are three types of irregular profiles that 
need correcting by means of coiffure and millinery. 
These are the convex profile with the prominent nose 
and receding forehead and chin, the retrousse profile 
with the short, upturned nose, and the long-chinned 
profile so unkindly referred to as the lantern jaw. 

Hair and millinery can do wonders to bring these ir- 
regular profiles into line. Too many women consider 
only the front view of a coiffure and are crushingly ob- 
livious of the hairdresser's pride in the profile view 
which he tries to point out when he offers his unappre- 
ciative client a hand mirror. 

If you have a non-conformist profile, always do your 
hair before a triple mirror and try to get the effects we 
outline below. 

We have shown you these heads without hats because 
the coiffure is so especially important to the profile. But 
in choosing a hat, all you have to remember is to be 
sure it follows the same general lines as the coiffure. We 
shall give more specific directions immediately. We give 
you now our three errant profiles. 

-88- 



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CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALVE 




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The problem here is to bring that nose into line. The 
most important thing to do is to carry the hair forward 
to mask the receding forehead and balance the nose. 

Another grave mistake in the left-hand sketch is the 
curl on a level with the eye, narrowing the face where 
width is most needed. In the right-hand sketch this curl 
is brushed back. You may wonder why we didn't bring 
the hair down over the cheeks. The trouble with that is 
this face needs lifting. And so upswept hairlines are 
vital. That is why you can't have curls on the neck. 

But you can wave the hair and in that way build up 
the back of the head so that the neck looks less shorn. 
And having the most width on a level with the eye 
gives the nose a noticeable recession. 

Hats, of course, should follow the hair contours. Any 
forward-sweeping hat is suavely flattering to this type. 
This may mean brims or swooping twisted crowns or 
whatever forward movement is in vogue. 

-89- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 





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This is the convex profile in reverse English. The 
nose needs accenting. And so you need width from nose 
to ear. We get it by brushing the hair back off the face. 
Also baring the forehead gives the nose prominence. If 
the retrousse type wears bangs at all, they should be 
brushed back from the face. And high-piled curls give a 
long diagonal from the nose to the back of the head 
that is highly desirable. 

But there is something else to be considered here. 
The retrousse profile is always inclined to look childish 
no matter what its owner's age may be. For that reason, 
a little-girl hairdo is obviously out. You want to look 
older and so you can. You will adore piling your hair 
high and doing a DuBarry. 

Millinery for the retrouss^ profile should be like your 
coiffure— off-the-face. A brim coming down over your 
nose will obliterate it completely. Also, you must avoid 
naive hats and go coquettish in a big way. 

-90- 



CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 




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No bangs, please. Because the more forehead, the less 
chin by comparison. But you can wear a dip to relieve 
the stark effect at the forehead providing you keep it 
well above the eye. 

And— this is important— cover your ears to shorten the 
line from chin to ear. 

Also your hair must go out at the back to avoid that 
close-fitting line about the crown that points straight at 
the chin. Somehow the bun in the left-hand sketch adds 
to the general schoolmarmish effect. But a floating, long 
bob masks the line at the back of the head and fulfills 
the covered ear requirement, too. 

Hats for this profile should be off-the-face to give 
forehead height. You can imagine how a turned down 
brim would eclipse the forehead and make the chin look 
positively grim. This type should avoid peaks or any 
height diametrically opposite the chin and should aim 

-91- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

at softness, scrupulously avoiding tailored severity. 
What do you do if profile directions conflict with 
those for the full face? Decide which needs the most 
correcting and then follow directions for that. Profile 
directions discuss only hair and millinery. For we think 
make-up should always be governed by the front view. 

wAn^w/ ike ^lavire influenced the L^oiHure 

Common sense indicates that tall figures should wear 
the hair low while short figures should pile it high. To 
such elementary principles, we add a few fine points. 
For a long-busted figure, sweep the hair forward from 
the back of the head because a pompadour would con- 
tinue and accentuate the too full curve of the breasts. 
For a flat-chested or drooping figure, do the reverse, 
drawing the hair off the face and piling it high at the 
back of the head. 

^aeiina the ^ace vUltk foundations 

Hollywood started this as a purely professional tech- 
nique. But lately the beauty people have been rec- 
ommending it for women in private life. A study of 
this technique explains how certain of the movie stars 
manage to look so perfect on the screen and go about 
unrecognized on the street. Margaret Sullavan, in a re- 
cent interview, said frankly she couldn't get over the 
job the make-up artists did on her in Hollywood. We 
once watched one of them at work and he told all: how 

-92- 



CAPITALIZING YOUR FACE VALUE 

you "wash out" a double chin, Hues, anything. It's all 
done with different shades of powder foundation. 

They do it more crudely on the stage with grease- 
paint where they have to exaggerate everything because 
of the footlights. But the principle is the same. You use 
a lighter foundation to bring a feature forward or a 
darker foundation to sink it. 

For instance, women with deep-set eyes, like Norma 
Shearer's, can bring them out by using the lighter foun- 
dation around them (going light on the eye shadow and 
relying chiefly on mascara to outline the eyes them- 
selves). 

Or suppose you fancy your nose is too wide. You can 
make it look high-bridged and haughty by drawing a 
line down the middle with the lighter foundation and 
using the darker foundation on the sides. 

If you want to make a square or round face more oval, 
you blot out the lower part of the cheeks with the darker 
foundation. They do say that Dietrich, herself, does this 
to get that interesting high-cheekboned effect. And a 
double chin can be washed out by means of the darker 
foundation so that even in profile, it can scarcely be de- 
tected. While a light foundation will bring a receding 
chin forward. 

/ For wrinkles, match the wrinkle shadows with a dark- 
/ ish foundation that has the same result as soft lights of 
iC^giving a beautifully smooth effect. 

Of course, always, you blend the edges of the various 
foundations very carefully so that they melt into one 
another. Then a thin coating of powder completes the 

-93- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

illusion. Powder is never wiped or scrubbed on but 
patted in and then brushed to remove every visible 
grain. 

One beauty house goes into this thoroughly with three 
different lines of cosmetics. One is designed for amateur 
dramatics, another for photography and a third for pri- 
vate life. We shouldn't recommend this last for the 
street. But for gala occasions where you are more or less 
on display, it is as correct as it is charming. 

Have a professional specializing in this kind of make-up 
work out your own particular salvation and show you 
how to repeat the procedure yourself. It's far easier done 
than described. You'll find reassembling your own as- 
sortment of features becomes second nature. And the 
effect is a decided improvement on Nature— exactly what 
she, herself, might have done, given a second chance. 



94- 



cXi^^oiv^ dUftMf^ X^ujt "^dii a^nfvMvi/vx^ 'LiruuLinA 



CHAPTER SEVEN 

Color Scheming 

Probably when you were a child, you were taught 
"blue for a blonde and pink for a brunette." You thought 
redheads were just out of luck. But gradually it dawned 
on you there was more to it than that. 

Before drawing any conclusions about color schemes, 
it is always sound to consult an artist. Studying the art 
of various periods reveals many interesting principles. 
Beginning with Egypt, we note a fondness for terra 
cottas, saffrons and turquoises. From the frescoes in the 
Valley of the Kings, we may assume the Egyptian ladies 
had complexions fairer than their more sunburned es- 
corts, but still what we would call burnt orange today. 
Both terra cotta and saffron have a touch of orange in 
them, while turquoise comes near being the comple- 
mentary color— that is, the first two harmonize well with 
burnt orange while the last is the perfect contrast. No 
other colors would have been half so effective. 

Now look at Chinese art. Ming yellow and Chinese 
red are favorite colors. Both contain enough yellow to 

-95- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

flatter clear ivory skins. Both afford brilliant contrasts 
to blue-black hair. 

Skip to the paintings of the feudal clair de lune beau- 
ties who bled themselves to achieve the translucent pal- 
lor of the Lily Maid of Astalot. When they had ap- 
proached the fabulous milky whiteness of the unicorn, 
itself, they wore Saxon greens and Madonna blues, both 
of which accentuate pallor and make blonde hair look 
almost platinum. 

With the Renaissance, Titian made the redhead, who 
had been something of a stepchild, a veritable Cinder- 
ella. He painted every red-haired woman he could get 
to pose for him, and painted them in red. But it was 
Titian red with a definite henna cast, always just duller 
than the lady's locks. And it made them glow like a 
nimbus of Roman gold. 

Other Renaissance artists painted the olive-skinned 
Latin type, the great ladies of Florence and Venice, in 
deep soft blues, which shatters the old blue for blondes 
theory to smithereens. It seems that anyone with yellow 
skin tones and high color can wear blue divinely. And 
today, of course, color may be had at the dime store. 

Getting on to the French court painters, who immor- 
talized Madame de Pompadour, and Gainsborough, who 
did the same for the Duchess of Devonshire, we find them 
using a good deal of del, a heavenly blue, with touches 
of old rose. This brought out the pink and white cos- 
metics of the period and did well by the silvery pow- 
dered hair, too. 

Then the Pre-Raphaelites dramatized ash blondes with 
delicate fir green draperies that brightened the hair. 

-96- 



COLOR SCHEMING 

Tcxiay Benda has glorified coppery-haired beauties 
with amber and peacock green. The amber, keyed lower 
than the hair, lets it dominate the costume. While the 
peacock, being in direct contrast, throws it into equally 
dramatic relief. And Marie Laurencin likes clear, Prus- 
sian blues or blush rose for her almond-eyed ladies. 

That will give you a few ideas to start on, from which 
we may deduce certain rules. Right there you may say, 
* 'That's all very well. But these are all vivid people- 
even the ash blondes are blonde. What if you're nothing 
but the average American brown?" Then we say tint 
your hair. Don't dye it. Don't try to be a blonde or a 
redhead or a raven-haired beauty unless you're going 
on the stage. But have rinses with your shampoo to give 
your hair chestnut or mahogany glints. This will make 
it easier to find becoming colors. But stick to subtle 
effects. And remember this: vivid colors are for vivid 
types. Less definite types should wear softer shades or 
they will look washed out. If this disappoints you, stop 
and think— you can wear many more colors than a more 
striking type, so you will wear better as it were. You 
need never become monotonous. 

We told you about the effect of various colors on the 
figure. Whenever these rules conflict with those we set 
forth for flattering your complexion, have your costume 
in a color that is good for your figure and wear touches 
of the color chosen for your coloring near the face; at 
the neck of a dress or coat, at the face-line of a hat, and 
in necklaces and earrings and clips. 

Now to draw up definite rules for suiting your colors 
to your coloring. No wonder women are bewildered. 

-97- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

One cosmetic house shrieks, "Match your skin/' another 
"Make up to your eyes," another types you by your hair. 
And a fourth promises you can wear any color with 
proper make-up. Who is right? Everybody, even the last, 
for the beauty people can do wonders to broaden your 
repertoire of becoming colors. The following charts, 
however, will deal only with colors that are naturally 
becoming. 

Then where to begin? The whole matter is simplified, 
of course, by the fact that your skin, eyes, and hair do 
bear some relation to each other. When a woman's hair 
turns gray, her skin turns with it. Even her eyes usually 
change somewhat. So suiting everything is not quite as 
hard as it may seem. 

A sensible suggestion is to play up to your most strik- 
ing feature. If your hair is a wonderful shade of red or 
gold or black, play up to that. If your eyes are the most 
noticeable thing about you, play up to them. And if you 
are so perfectly balanced that no one feature dominates 
the others, take your cue from your skin. 

So let's begin with the skin and see what we have. 
There are three main types: white, yellowish and rose- 
tinted. Don't mistake that last for a skin with high color. 
Because an olive skin may have color, yet its basic skin 
tone is yellow. 

Incidentally, the shade of natural color in ttie cheeks 
is influenced by the skin tones. Rose skins will have cool 
color, that is rose shades. Yellow skins will have warmer 
color, such as peach or scarlet. That's why you have to 
match your rouge so carefully to your skin tones. We 

-98- 



COLOR SCHEMING 

shall speak of natural color and rouge later. Right now, 
we're talking about basic skin tones. 

And we would differentiate the three groups still fur- 
ther. There are the milk-white skins that go with some 
shades of red hair. And there are also pearly skins, that 
complement blue-black hair and black eyes— what we 
think of as the Castilian type. There are creamy or 
golden blonde skins, the kinds that go with ash blonde 
hair and golden hair respectively. And there are warm 
olive skins that go with brown hair and eyes. There are 
delicate shell-pink or wild-rose skins that you see with 
red hair and brown eyes, or with fair hair and blue eyes. 
And there are swarthy brunette skins. 

Now the trick is to wear colors that include the domi- 
nant skin tone or else present a striking contrast. 



L^oiors Jkat flatter* Ujour ^kln Jones 

Whfte Skins: white, any clear color or black 

Creamy Skins: canary yellow, chartreuse, green, golden 

brown or for the exact opposite, violet shades * 
Pearly Skins: dusty pink, heather, rose beige, dubon- 

net or for a flattering contrast, black 
Olive Skins: scarlet, flame, emerald, beaver brownjoy 

for contrast Madonna blue * 



Rose 5kins: rose, violet,* peach, American beauty and 
for contrast, greens * 

* Only when there is natural color, or when rouge is worn. (If you 
aren't sure of your skin tone, consult a good cosmetic house.) 

-99- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Swarthy Skins: terra cotta, orange, scarlet, tobacco 
brown and for contrast, cerise 

In choosing colors for the complexion, there's still 
another thing to remember. Everyone knows better than 
to brave the seasick shadows cast by a green parasol 
But few people realize that many colors cast some re- 
flection on the skin. In Hollywood, they hold a swatch 
of the fabric against a piece of white paper to test it for 
this, when doing a color film. If it casts a reflection, you 
yourself, must decide whether you want that reflection 
or not. If it's not in your skin tones, you don't want it. 
It will make your skin look muddy, just as mixing too 
many paints gives a muddy color. 

(^osmetics ana V lateral L^ownna 

We shall assume that you know enough to have your 
lipstick of exactly the same tone as your rouge but in a 
deeper shade. And both must tone in with the natural 
coloring to avoid the made-up look which went out with 
the post-war flapper. 

The aim is to look natural. Then why make up? For 
a silly reason— because everyone else does. Competition 
amongst the ladies is the life of the cosmetic trade. 
Napoleon considered a woman undressed without rouge. 
It was a convention then as it is now. And any uncon- 
ventional move is conspicuous. But it can be striking. 
We wouldn't advise you to leave off lipstick or mascara 

— 100 — 



COLOR SCHEMING 

or eye shadow. But we do advise certain skin types to 
forego rouge— namely the swarthy skin, the pearly skin 
and the white skin. Rouge makes too great a contrast 
against these complexions and so it looks made up. But 
the more contrast at the lips, the better. And so we ad- 
vise scarlet lipstick for the swarthy skin, dubonnet for 
the pearly skin and out-and-out orange or at least tan- 
gerine for the pure white skin that goes with certain 
shades of red hair. Not pink. You wouldn't put pink 
and red together in a dress, would you? 

Someone has said that rouge makes red-headed women 
look common. We fancy that's the reason. Orange rouge, 
and it would have to be orange, is neither natural nor 
attractive. If these women are worried about Napoleon's 
remark, let them remember deshabille can be extremely 
striking. On the contrary, rouge is the great standby of 
the women with average brown hair and drab coloring 
generally. Because it brings out the color of their eyes 
and brightens their hair. 

And contrary to all expectations, deftly blended rouge 
takes down florid color because it adds more color in the 
desired spot, thereby making the rest of the face look 
paler. It is a great palliative for red noses. 

The amount of rouge you wear will vary, of course, 
according to the lights. You will need more in the eve- 
ning naturally. And it will be influenced too, by the 
colors you wear. Blues, greens and violets, require more 
color, whether natural or applied, than do reds, yellows 
and oranges. 

— 101 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



f^iauina Lip to Lyovir C^ia 



es 



A great designer who has become almost a tradition 
of Fifty-seventh Street, once wrote "Match your eyes in 
the daytime and your hair at night." Of course you can't 
really match your eyes, because they are so changeable 
in different lights. And the strange thing about eyes is 
they have much less color than we think. That's why 
photographs are usually so wretchedly tinted— amateur- 
ish artists can never seem to realize this. Hold a piece of 
blue paper up to the eyes of Stuart's Washington and 
you will see that they are not blue at all. That's all to 
the good because, since the eyes offer neutral colors in 
small areas, you can make them almost anything you 
please. If you have fairly blue eyes and sigh for the vio- 
let eyes of the Edwardian novelists' heroines, wear a 
violet frock and then see what you've got. Here is a list 
of colors that will "pull over" the eyes to reflect them, or 
else intensify their color by contrast. 

C^olord to ^iattet* Mour C^ueS 

Blue: powder blue, sapphire, ciel, periwinkle, orchid, 
rose 

Gray: gray, dusty rose, heather, mauve, chartreuse, cin- 
nabar 

Hazel: hazel green, golden brown, coral, tearose, peach, 
^J[ame_„_____ ~ 

Brown: brown, emerald, scarlet, dubonnet, amber, rose^, 
beige _^^^-^-. - — - ...-— -^^ -^ 

"""^ "^ — 102 — 



COLOR SCHEMING 

Green: hunter green, fir green, peacock green, tur- 
quoise, aqua, copper 
Black: black, Ming yellow, capucine, jade, gold, orange 

Of course you can enhance your effects by matching 
your eye shadow to your costume color except in the 
cases of reds. Red shadow will make your eyes look sore. 
And pale yellow eye shadows are not good, because they 
lend no shadow at all. (Though amber and gold can be 
extraordinarily striking in the evening, when combined 
with a deeper shade.) So in the case of a red or yellow 
gown, it is more satisfactory to take your cue for eye 
shadow from the eyes, themselves. Some cosmeticians 
have a theory that the shadow must not match the eye 
exactly or the eye will be sunk. But, as we said before, 
it is scarcely possible to match the eyes. So don't let that 
worry you unduly. However, carefully considered con- 
trasts can be most successful, as green or lavender shadow 
with brown eyes, green or violet with blue eyes, amber 
or gold with green eyes, brown or violet with gray eyes, 
and so on. 

f^tauina ufp to ijour U^aiif 

We told you how Titian brought out the beauty of 
Titian hair with red-browns, how Burne-Jones made 
ash blonde hair look golden against gray-greens. The 
trick is to keep the costume in a key just a shade lower 
or paler than the hair if the hair is colorful or else, as in 
the case of brown and black hair, to stress its dark 
beauty by the contrast of strong, brilliant colors. 

-103- 



i\ 






DESIGNING WOMEN 

What about the average brown hair? In the first place, 
this woman should not feature it. But if she did, she 
would find almost any shade of blue will bring out the 
chestnut or mahogany glints we advised achieving by 
way of a rinse. 

This may be the explanation of a quite prevalent the- 
ory that blue is becoming to all women. Change that to 
the average woman and we endorse it emphatically. Also 
blue seems to be a particularly feminine color. Nine out 
of ten men will tell you they like their wives best in 
blue. 

But to continue about rinses. They can be most useful 
during the awkward stage of turning gray. White hair, 
of course, is wonderful with a fresh-colored skin or a 
clear ivory complexion. And nature has arranged it so 
that women with swarthy skins seldom have white hair, 
but instead a sort of gunmetal ^r ay that is as _ dist in- 
guished with its brown skin a^jthe^combination of dark 
gray and brown that is so fashionable today. 

Bur^atuH"~HTnny""overlooked the graying process. 
And that's where a hairdresser who is clever at tinting 
can help you a lot. Just before turning actually gray, 
blondes go blah. At this point, a camomile rinse will 
help to restore the bright warmth of youth. While softly 
grayed, tweedy colors, like a capable supporting cast, 
will maintain your hair in its stellar role. Likewise 
chestnut hair will go mousy and need the merest suspi- 
cion of henna. But when the hair becomes more gray 
than yellow or brown or red, bluing it will neutralize 
the yellowish or brownish or reddish tints that are left 
and you will have a new personality for which you must 

— 104 — 



COLOR SCHEMING 

cultivate a whole new repertoire of costume colors. 
Today there is a great vogue for violet rinses, too. 
They can be overdone, of course. But applied with taste, 
they do soften the iron gray look. They are especially 
effective with brown eyes. And finally, white hair needs 
to be blued very subtly to combat the yellowish look of 
old parchment that is all too common. The sun will 
turn white hair yellow in ten minutes. Wear a hat on 
clear days and use blue or violet rinses— but ever so care- 
fully. You can't stand them nearly as strong as the iron 
gray woman. And you don't need to. Because your hair 
is naturally as striking as any platinum blonde's. 

Ash Blonde: gray, fir green, mauve, dusty pink, heather, 

cinnabar 
Golden Blonde: white, yellow, amber, leaf green, ciel 

blue, black 
Flaming Red: terra cotta, chartreuse, tearose, golden 

brown, turquoise, black 
Dark Red: ivory, yellow-green, powder blue, peacock 

blue, mahogany, black 
Rich Brown: scarlet, emerald, rose-beige, henna, orange, 

beaver-brown 
Black: Ming yellow, jade, Chinese red, American 

beauty, gold 
Gray: gray, red, old rose, mauve, Alice blue, black- 

and-gray 
White: black-and-white, sapphire, ice blue, aqua, coral, 

violet 

- 105 - 



n 



cM^^ix^/^ c£tftkj^> X^^ "dto"a©'YVv£X^ivvi^ lyr\^ uLin\ 



CHAPTER EIGHT 

How Colors Color Tour Outlook 

The psychology of color: Almost everybody admits 
there is something in this. But since we know so little 
about it there are plenty o£ cultists carrying it to ludi- 
crous extremes. However, we do know colors affect both 
the wearer and the observer, otherwise we could all wear 
black like the French peasants and save a lot of cleaners' 
bills. But most women would as soon take the veil as 
wear the habit of a nun. 

Naturally becoming colors make the wearer happy. 
And the fact that they are becoming pleases the be- 
holder, too. Both are inclined to like each other. 

However, even one's best color can become tiresome. 
We crave different colors for different moods. We give 
you the theory of the six colors in the spectrum as out- 
lined to us by the one-time head of the Paramount ward- 
robe department, and leave it to you to choose the shade 
of each color most becoming to you. 

Orange including all the peach and tearose and coral 
tones, is called the color of vitality; an excellent tonic 
for invalids or a perfect pick-me-up ^vhen you are tired. 

-loG- 



HOW COLORS COLOR YOUR OUTLOOK 

Green is the color of worldliness and material gain. 
The superstition about green jade for luck might sup- 
port this theory. The blue-greens are considered espe- 
cially restful. 

Yellow is considered the color of love, affection and 
friendship and gaiety. 

Red is disposed of as the color of strong passions, ag- 
gressive love or hatred, hence the saying, someone "made 
me see red." 

Blue is described as a spiritual, religious color. But 
pure blue is rather cold. Mixing it with green to get 
turquoise gives it a connection with the world that 
makes it more sympathetic for frivolous occasions. 

Purple is declared the color of power. According to 
that a woman can get what she goes after in violet 
shades. But so much power is rather awesome, and unre- 
lieved violet becomes a depressing color to the wearer 
and a rather terrifying color to the beholder. Mitigate 
your violet costumes with some other color. 

You will notice we have not mentioned black, brown, 
navy or gray. That's because they really are not colors 
at all but neutral tones. They are the basic tones that 
we use for the foundations of our wardrobes, for a num- 
ber of reasons. Because they go with many colors, be- 
cause they are less perishable than pastels or vivid 
colors, and because too much color is too aggressive. 

Now in speaking of these neutral tones we must utter 
a word of warning. Unrelieved, they have a nullifying 
effect. They help you to go unnoticed and actually make 

-107- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

you shrink into yourself. Shopgirls who must wear black, 
beauty store operators who must wear pongee, nurse- 
maids who must wear gray, even trained nurses restricted 
to hospital white, should wear gay clothes off duty. Gen- 
erally they do this instinctively. Never have we seen 
giddier negligees than those worn by our trained nurse 
friends. The same thing is true of their street clothes. 
And most shopgirls know how to smuggle a touch of 
color past the regulations; brilliant couturier jewelry or 
gay collars and vestees. When they go to lunch they 
positively bloom with color via hat and coat or gloves 
and bag. We suspect this need has occasioned the vogue 
for wearing brief tweed jackets in pastel or jewel tones 
over black frocks. 

We tell you all this simply to give you some idea of 
how to dress for your moods. When you're at low ebb, 
give yourself a lift with a peach teagown. If you're de- 
pressed and must go out and be merry, choose a yellow 
gown that will chase away the doldrums. If you're going 
to a rather tense interview, wear blue-green and you 
and your vis-a-vis will both relax. If it doesn't work, one 
of you is color blindl 

Combining Colors. (Of the color schemes suggested 
in this section, choose only those becoming to your 
coloring.) 

One of the first things they teach you in elementary 
design is "the brighter the color the smaller the area." 
That is why a woman in a whole dress of flamboyant 
red looks common. She fights for attention. But she is 

- 108- 



prop 

/ the I 
iff distil 

^^else i 



HOW COLORS COLOR YOUR OUTLOOK 

not nearly so striking as, for instance, the daughter of 
a Mexican hidalgo who contrived an entire costume of 
black— black coat, black hat, black fur cape, and at the 
throat, just a thin line of capucine. 

You don't have to carry out this principle with neu- 
trals as a background. You can take a tip from the 
French who combine what we would consider utterly 
incompatible colors perfectly by using one pastel as a 
background with touches of an intense shade. In equal 
proportions, they would fight bitterly. But^Jby_gauging 
the proportions carefully, the French get original and 
distinguished etiects that are different becaus e~nobody 
else dares try them. 

Jbor instance, you might think that yellow and orange 
would be impossible together. But nature combines 
them most successfully in primroses— by using the orange 
sparingly. Similarly, quite the prettiest spectator sports 
frock of the season was primrose yellow with orange 
buttons. 

When in doubt, it is a good idea to copy nature's 
color effects. You will discover that green goes with al- 
most everything. A combination that is extremely ef- 
fective is green with lilac. Take your cue from a lilac 
bush and you will use a good deal more green than lilac. 

One of the pitfalls of combining two shades of the 
same color is that it is so hard to get two different shades 
of exactly the same tone. That's what makes light blue 
and navy an abomination to the artist, though people 
less educated to color values insist this scheme is very 
nice. Navy is not a deeper shade of any blue— ciel, pow- 

-109- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

der, skipper, royal or turquoise. It is a tone all by itself, 
just as much as gray, brown, or black. It just happens 
to have a good deal of blue in it. Blues are tricky. Only 
a genius can combine them well. 

Grays are even worse to combine. Few stores will un- 
dertake to match them exactly, much less harmonize 
them, though it can be done. Gunmetal, for instance, 
will go with almost any cool shade of gray. But other- 
wise beware of attempting this. 

Greens somehow are friendlier to each other, though 
even here you can come to grief. An emerald shade will 
make a gray-green look pretty sickly. However, if you 
stick to leaf greens, you can go from pale willow green 
to deep evergreen without much difficulty. 

Yellows, too, tend to harmonize even when they are 
not quite the same tone. 

Pvose shades are fine together, always excepting tea- 
rose. If you stick to real rose tints and steer clear of 
reds, you can get some handsome combinations. 

And now a word about accessories. If you're using 
them for contrast, don't overdo it. Never have more 
than two accessories in contrast to your costume or you 
will seem to strain for effect. With a navy costume wear 
an emerald belt and bag, or an emerald bag and gloves, 
or emerald jewelry, or an emerald blouse and a touch 
of emerald on your hat. In this connection, enough is 
better than a feast. Too much of even a good thing be- 
comes insupportable. 

Also a word about prints. They need the relief of 

— no — 



HOW COLORS COLOR YOUR OUTLOOK 

some solid color— the border of the print, or a solid 
colored hat and accessories, otherwise you're a dizzying 
whirligig. Your accessories might match the background 
of the print or its lightest color or they might be a con- 
trast if the print is a monotone. 

And never, never, never combine two patterns. You'd 
think nobody ever would. But these unbelieving eyes 
have seen a flower print dress topped by a hat with a 
polka dotted band. Don't combine stripes with dots or 
plaids with checks or even two different patterns of the 
same type. There is a theory that mal de mer comes 
from the eyes which may explain why combining differ- 
ent patterns can have an actually sick-making effect. 

But we promised you some specific color schemes. Let 
us call to mind memorable glimpses of various women 
of distinction. There was the internationally known 
stylist of French descent, in powder blue accented with 
a dash of dubonnet; Elizabeth Arden in a pert gray 
flannel tailleur with a shell pink blouse; Jane Miller 
in green-gold tweed with emerald bag and gloves. At 
a recent fashion show, an American design in pale 
peach with a wide collar of embossed turquoise leather 
brought down the house. A brief glimpse of Norma 
Shearer in black with a jade jacket is unforgettable after 
several years— also Constance Bennett at the theater in 
ciel blue with amethysts; Clara Fargo Thomas, the 
mural painter, in a hunter green corduroy suit with a 
copper scarf; Margery Wilson, dean of charm teachers, 
in a black velvet house coat with saffron sleeves and 

— Ill — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

a gold leather belt; Alice Hughes the columnist, ad- 
dressing an evening fashion meeting in an ivory gown 
and a Chinese coat-wrap of coppery brocade. 

Another color principle, the trick of combining colors 
with furs, is really very simple. Choose fabrics that are 
becoming to the fur's complexion. Set off tawny furs 
with strong greens. Give brown furs a background of 
dusty pink or deep wine. For contrast, with black fur 
use gold or jade or scarlet. And blue fox on smoky blue 
broadcloth is delightful. 

Now a word about weddings. Here you want to con- 
sider the effect of the wedding party as a whole. You 
can dress each attendant in a different color so that 
the party looks like an old-fashioned nosegay. Or you 
can use one color shading the procession from, say, shell 
pink to American beauty. The trouble with both these 
schemes is that they are hard on the bride. She is lim- 
ited to white or the off-white shades and cannot possibly 
be as dramatic as her attendants, which is rather too 
bad, since it's her show. That's what was behind the 
recent movement away from bridal white. 

If she does wear color, the bride should wear her 
most becoming color, naturally. And the rest of the 
party should lead up to it. 

However, if the bride wishes to wear white satin, a 
Hattie Carnegie creation that caused much comment 
could easily climax a colorful wedding party. With the 
bridesmaids in crocus colors— yellow, rose and violet— 
the bride could have her white satin and her drama too, 

— 112 — 



HOW COLORS COLOR YOUR OUTLOOK 

by wearing the famous Hattie Carnegie veil studded 
with iridescent mother-of-pearl paillettes, reflecting all 
the crocus colors. Or another device to give prominence 
to the white bride is to dress the party in Empire colors 
—that is, the attendants would be in rich ruby and 
emerald velvet with the bride in white satin embroid- 
ered with gold. 

C^noodlna C^otot5 to S^uit iyovtt* l/Dackawiina 

You know, of course, that black is actually the warm- 
est thing you can wg^^r bpranspTt stops^l ljLh e rays^o f 
the sun and throws none of th em back. On the contrary, 
white is the coolest color because it throws back all the 
sun's rays. So naturally, you wear a good deal of black 
in the winter and white in the summe r. But, in artistic 
terms, warm and cool colors are something else again. 

Of the tones we call real colors, red, orange and yel- 
low are warm; green, blue and violet are cool. They 
make some slight difference in the actual physical tem- 
perature of the wearer. But their chief effect is psy- 
chological. The reds, oranges and yellows suggest fire 
and the sun. While green suggests cool shade. Blue re- 
calls cool water. And violet reminds us of cool shadows. 
Artists go even further into this and use "warm" and 
"cool" as comparative terms. Thus a warm green will 
be a yellow green. A cool violet will be a blue violet 
shade. 

In choosing colors for various seasons of the year, let 

-113- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

the seasons inspire your color schemes and you will feel 
particularly in harmony with the general scheme of 
things. For instance, in April you may have a fancy for 
yellow. You indulge in yellow tweeds and add a pale 
green scarf. Instinctively you have chosen a costume 
that reflects the clear April sunlight unfiltered by leaves. 
And you have relieved it with the green of young shoots 
and tendrils. 

Or in May, you might like to copy a woman of subtle 
taste, who wore last blossom time, a green corduroy suit 
and a flower cap covered with petals in apple blossom 
pink. 

In midsummer, you may like a cool, forget-me-not 
blue chiffon with a bunch of violets at the waist. 

In the autumn, you will want vivid tweeds in warm 
colors-maple leaf reds or yellows combined with bark 
brown. 

In winter you will take to black, that silhouettes you 
like a tall tree against the snows. Always late in winter, 
there comes a feeling for white hats in soft fabrics like 
duvetyn, that give you a snow-capped look. 

Your winter sports clothes will be chosen for more 
lively contrasts with the snow. One couturier has been 
outstandingly successful with aurora borealis colors for 
ski clothes— blue violet combined with an electric green 
and the pinky flame peculiar to the northern lights. 

On your southern cruise, you will take to such sym- 
pathetic colors as Nassau blue, that incredible turquoise 
shade of the south seas, and delicate coral pink and when 
you have tanned a bit, terra cottas and crude greens 

-114- 



HOW COLORS COLOR YOUR OUTLOOK 

such as the Mexican peons wear to set off their dark 
skins. 

Carry this idea into your home, too. Choose negUgees 
that harmonize with your bedroom. Choose breakfast 
coats that will be set off by the background of your 
breakfast nook, evening gowns that will harmonize with 
your living room. A little thought along these lines con- 
tributes much to your effects. People are grateful to a 
woman who makes of herself a charming picture against 
a truly harmonious background. 

They say Empress Josephine understood this princi- 
ple only too well. The story goes that she maneuvered 
a guest whom she disliked onto a yellow sofa. The guest 
was in red so that the effect was hideous. While Jose- 
phine, herself, in ivory satin, was distinctly flattered by 
her becoming setting. And the scheme worked. For the 
gentlemen boycotted the red lady with crushing una- 
nimity. 



-115- 



cJko-«<w«v^ dL<fOfit^ *lud" "cicTa^nol^vK^ ^Ln^ iMn\ 



CHAPTER NINE 

Dressing in Tempo With Tour Temperament 

Cast yourself in a certain role and dress the part. 
This is the subtlest aspect of taste, the greatest aid in 
achieving distinction and incidentally the most fun. 

Now that you have learned to set off your face and 
figure, you must decide on your temperament so that 
you can express it in every line, shade, and fabric of 
your wardrobe down to the least detail. The modern 
style of portrait painting led by Augustus John does 
this and depicts interesting women. The Duchess of 
Windsor does this and she rocked the British Empire. 
People marvel at her career. "But," they exclaiin^ "she 
is not bea utiful." Ah, bu t she is interestin g. She dresses 
not only to flatter 'her physique but to interpret a vivid 
personality. 

Incidentally, this art is particularly vital to the average 
woman— the woman with composite features, medium 
coloring, and mediocre figure. For she must dramatize 
something to avoid being a nonentity. 

So, in the following pages we shall attempt brief 
character sketches of six fundamental temperaments. 

-116- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

And you must decide which one is yours. Then study 
the wardrobes suggested for that type and see how you 
can make them fit in with your requirements. 



^fie L^oauetL 



9 



Examples: Billie Burke, Elizabeth Arden, Lily Pons. 
Physical characteristics: petite figure, retrouss6 features, 
curled coiffures. 

We had thought of calling this type the ingenue, but 
decided against it because age has nothing to do with 
it. Once a coquette always a coquette, witness Billie 
Burke who is an excellent example. This is a feminine, 
frivolous woman, gay, provocative, demure, fragile, 
dainty. She is a hothouse creature made for dancing, 
entertaining and creating a delightful home. And how 
does she express all this in her wardrobe? 
Types of Clothes: There will be nothing tailored in 
a typical coquette wardrobe. The coquette does not 
go in seriously for sports. So her country clothes will 
be of the spectator type. She will have more dresses 
than suits, and what suits she has, will be dressmaker 
things in soft wools, only the very softest of tweeds, 
velvets and duvetyns. More often than not, they will 
be trimmed with one of the softer furs. She will have 
teagowns rather than housecoats— pajamas are anath- 
ema to her—and she will have dance frocks that look 
made for moonlight. 
Lines: Her best period influences are the styles of Du- 

-117- 



DRESSING IN TEMPO 

Barry and Pompadour, also Colonial and Victorian 
designs. She will find inspiration in the paintings 
of Watteau and Fragonard. She is enchanting in 
Watteau-esque robes de style, Colonial panniers or 
Victorian crinolines. Her decolletages are off-the- 
shoulder, her skirts bouffant, her silhouettes made up 
of soft curves with never a straight line anywhere. 
She will wear her hair in soft waves and use flowers 
a great deal; not orchids, but gardenias to outline 
her decolletage, a camellia tucked into her hair in 
the evening, or in the daytime, a spray of sweet peas 
or lily-of-the-valley at her throat or on her bonnet. 
Her jewelry will be interesting heirlooms or modern 
reproductions of these quaint settings. She will wear 
sashes instead of belts and frills and bows and rib- 
bons and laces. She will affect basques, bustles, pep 
lums, tippet capes, belling skirts with bands at the 
bottom. Her bodices will be fitted, with shirring or 
rows of tiny buttons down the front. Her hats will 
be poke bonnets, scoop bonnets a la Watteau, flower 
caps in the Fragonard manner and Victorian toques. 

Colors: The coquette will wear pastels, of course, to 
express her gentle charm. There is nothing aggressive 
about her. And that, in this day and age, is the best 
possible formula for distinction. 

Fabrics: The coquette will wear soft but crushable, 
touch-me-not fabrics to enhance her Dresden china 
prettiness. For evening: lace, point d'esprit, taffeta, 
tulle, with perhaps a maribou cape. For daytime she 
will wear in winter printed challis and silks that 

-119- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

rustle; in summer: dotted Swiss, organdie, organza, 
printed taffeta, mousseline and batiste. 



^ne J^opkldilcati 



icale 

Examples: The Duchess of Windsor^ Ina Claire, Gloria 

Morgan Vanderbilt. 
Physical characteristics: trim, slender figure, irregular 
but striking features, sleek coiffure. 
The sophisticate is apt to be a career woman, restless, 
a doer, impatient, easily bored. Her conversation is 
amusing, brittle, intelligent. She is essentially a city- 
dweller and likes night life. She has a mind and admits 
it. She puts her wits to work to shop for clothes that are 
daring, dramatic, sensational. She adores tailored se- 
verity. 

Types of Clothes: She wears housecoats rather than 
teagowns, suits whenever possible— not conventional 
tailleurs but brilliant tweeds for sports and formal 
dinner suits. She can not tolerate anything fussy but 
prefers to use stark simplicity as a background for one 
striking decorative note (the Duchess of Windsor's 
famous lobster, printed on a dinner dress). Her favor- 
ite clothes are those worn for restaurant dining. And 
she may wear them all evening because they are spec- 
tacular amongst formal evening colors. 
Lines: The sophisticate is proud of her streamlined fig- 
ure and reveals it with a sheath silhouette. She goes 
to extremes always. Her decolletages will be breath- 

— 120 — 



B 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

taking. She will wear fabulous jewels in the evening 
with gowns designed expressly to set them oflE. In the 
daytime she will wear great hunks of costume jewelry. 
Her hats will be small and quite mad, inspired by 
anything from a French telephone to a strawberry 
basket. 

Colors: Black is the sophisticate's standby. It may be 
unrelieved, the better to show off some fantastic line, 
or it may be brightened with a brilliant splash of 
color. White is another tone favored by modernists. 
And so she uses white, too, as a background for vivid 
color. Black with beige is also a sophisticated schem e, 
o r black with gold, or purple with magenta. The 
stronger the contrast, the better, from her point of 
view. For the sophisticate, pastels simply do not exist. 

Fabrics: No clinging, diaphanous fabrics for the sophis- 
ticate, because they make her feel wilted. Definitely 
she is not a clinging vine. She likes lacquered sur- 
faces, ^cire_satinj_vna^r^^ metallic em- 
broider x,, starched lace^ scintillating paillettes and se- 
quins, /twee^orevening wraps. 



VLie. 



til 



omanuc 



Examples: Princess Matchabelli, Greta Garho, Princess 

Paley. 
Physical characteristics: pre-Raphaelite figure, chiseled 

features, wistful eyes, artistic unstudied coiffure. 

The romantic is passionately fond of beauty. She is 

— 122 — 



DRESSING IN TEMPO 

sensitive, artistic, delighted by rich, paintable colors 
and sculpturesque drapery. She may be an artist or a 
writer or an actress. She is shy, remote, inclined to day- 
dreaming. 

Types of Clothes: The romantic has a notion that she 
wants to be at her loveliest in her own home. She 
should collect luscious teagowns. Because she is at her 
best when entertaining. She will have soft dressmaker 
suits and a few afternoon and evening dresses. 
Lines: The romantic's gowns will be extremely simple, 
falling in sculptured folds to exhibit their beautiful 
texture and color. They will be influenced by medie- 
val tapestries, paintings of the Renaissance, or costumes 
worn in Shakespearean plays. Medieval robes, Vene- 
tian portrait gowns with broad gold leather belts or 
great metallic chains or jeweled girdles, Elizabethan 
ruffs and slashed sleeves all suit her style to perfec- 
tion. She will permit no ruffles or tucks or fussy de- 
tail to distract the eye from the enjoyment of the 
fabric itself. She will exercise restraint in the matter 
of jewelry, wearing no ornament but one or two 
pieces in the Renaissance manner— great stones set in 
hand-wrought metal. For afternoon, her best influ- 
ence is Van Dyck who was so fond of silhouetting 
white lace collars against dark velvet. Her millinery 
may be feudal peaks with long veils, Juliet caps, 
Florentine berets, the periods, of course, being dic- 
tated by her costume. 
Colors: The romantic can not resist rich jewel tones 
and stained glass colors. In the daytime, too, she 

-123- 




(unm/\i\^ 



DRESSING IN TEMPO 

should be colorful in those strange off-shades artists 
adore; Titian red (a brownish shade). Van Dyck 
brown (warmly golden), Benda's green gold, Monet's 
blue-violet, and so on. 
Fabrics: Her first choice is velvet. Chiffon and satin are 
favorites too because they drape so well. She loves 
heathery tweeds for the country. She wears prints 
rarely because they detract from the lines of her cos- 
tume and because she is so fastidious about patterns 
that she seldom finds one to her taste. When she does, 
it is invariably hand-blocked. 



^ne f^at 



naan 



Examples: Mrs, Harrison Williams, The Duchess of 

Kent, Lynn Fontanne. 
Physical characteristics: slender curves, exquisite skin 
and hair, soft coiffure. 

This type tries as hard to avoid the spectacular as the 
sophisticate does to achieve it. She is a lady first and 
foremost. She is ultra-conservative in her tastes, admir- 
ing exquisite fabrics, precious furs, real jewels. But her 
conservative tempo need not make her a nonentity. 
There are many ways in which she can achieve quiet but 
definite distinction. 

Types of Clothes: The patrician has little use for 
active sports clothes. In the country, she wears British 
tweeds, preferably the softer ones. In town, she wears 
tailleurs. She likes formal furred suits for cocktail 

-125- 



DRESSING IN TEMPO 

parties and she needs little dinner dresses as well as 
formal evening gowns. She will find one or two simple 
but elegant black dresses indispensable. 

Lines: In the evening, Directoire and Empire influ- 
ences are perfect because of the stylized elegance. 
Her formal suits may strike a dignified Edwardian 
note with postilion feeling and a cascade of ruffles 
on an exquisite lingerie blouse. With her tailleur she 
may wear a hat with derby lines, with a veil tucked 
into the high stock. With more formal clothes she 
may wear tricornes, Coronet effects, Gainsborough 
picture hats, etc. 

Colors: The patrician will prefer foggy tones for her 
tweeds, grays f or her tailleurs, set off by the deeper 
tones of a silver fox scarf, and for formal suits, taupe, 
eggpla nt or garnet. Her afternoon dresses will be 
d^larl^l relieved with pearls or, in summer, clearly 
blocked black and white prints of well-considered, 
highly decorative design. Her evening gowns will be 
colors such as Empire green, royal purple, peeress red 
or that truly royal combination, always a favorite of 
the Belgian Queen Elizabeth, white satin trimmed or 
brocaded in gold. 

Fabrics: Besides the tweeds and the men's wear fabrics 
for her tailleurs, and the black crepes for afternoon, 
and the summer prints, the patrician will wear in the 
evening such ^iffly formaL -i abrica aa upholGtorc r's 
satin, ottom an, fail l e, brocade, Lvons velvet— all th e 

I richest and most sumptuous, rnatprials -frhe cnn_di'i 
C^^over. 

— 127 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



^ke Ljc 



amine 

Examples: Katharine Hepburn, Elsa Schiaparelli, Bea- 
trice Lillie, 

Physical characteristics: boyish almost gauche figure, im- 
pudent features, rebellious hair. 
Like the coquette, the gamine need not be young in 

years. But in spirit she is an enfant terrible. She is a 

non-conformist. She should never subdue her rebellious 

spirit in the softer fashions but insist upon being her 

impudent self on all occasions. 

Types of Clothes: The gamine will revel in active 
sports clothes and swagger tweeds and tailleurs. She 
won't have an afternoon dress to her name. She will 
wear military pajamas instead of teagowns or house- 
coats, and her evening things will be piquantly in- 
formal. 

Lines: The gamine's influences will be military, French, 
schoolgirl, Tyrolean peasant, toreador, Spanish, or 
Romany gypsy designs. In the daytime she will wear 
bolero dresses with toreador sashes to excellent effect. 
She may turn up for cocktails in a sort of fencing 
jacket. Or she may come in a wickedly naive school- 
girl box jacket and a hat rolled back all round with 
streamers behind. For her millinery she may borrow 
a bell-hop's pillbox, a toreador's horned hat, a post- 
man's cap, a note from Robin Hood, Francois Villon, 
even Mussolini himself. The evening mode of dirndls 
or short-skirted peasant dresses might have been de- 

- 128- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

signed expressly for her. She may come to a party as 
a Spanish dancer with a poppy in her hair. Her motto 
is anything goes— that is, anything with spirit. 

Colors: Gay, irrepressible colors are the gamine's de- 
light. Her tweeds are bright as a British hunt, her 
sports clothes gay as a Tyrolean holiday. For evening 
she likes Goya yellow or Romany red. 

Fabrics: Gamine fabrics are informal as possible. For 
sports: tweeds, flannels, suedes, cottons, and denims; 
for evening: velveteen, printed linen, gingham, pique, 
sateen or even cretonne. 



^ne (Lxoii 



LC 



Examples: Marlene Dietrich, Tallulah Bankhead, 

Helena Rubenstein. 
Physical characteristics: svelte figure, pale features, large 
eyes, extreme coiffures. 

This lady has a foreign flavor, mysterious and Orien- 
tal. She is apt to be an actress or a fashion model or 
someone who has wanted to be either or both. She, like 
the sophisticate, adores night life. She enjoys being 
looked at and she usually looks* like the popular con- 
ception of an international spy. The French do special 
dresses for this type, whom they call the femme fatale. 
Types of Clothes: The exotic will never wear sports 
clothes or suits. Her day begins at noon. And she 
never wears simple dresses, but costumes complete 
with hat (in the daytime) and barbaric jewelry. Her 

-130- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

wardrobe runs to teagowns, afternoon ensembles, din- 
ner gowns and evening clothes. 
Lines: The exotic draws her inspirations from the 
Orient. Dominant notes in her wardrobe are Chinese 
mandarin robes, Hindu veils, decolletages suggested 
by Javanese sarongs, Moorish wraps, harem skirts, 
needle sheathes, and, in the daytime, Cossack lines. 
Her hats will be Russian mitered crowns. Manchu 
headdresses, turbans or Russian chechias. 
Colors: Favorite color schemes of the exotic are: black 
in the unrelieved Russian manner, Chinese red, Ming 
yellow, Javanese brown (especially in lame), Egyptian 
prints. 
Fabrics: Chiffon worked with silver mesh in Hindu 
fashion, Chinese brocades, cire satin, lames in metal 
tones like burnished silver, gold, or bronze, coq 
feathers, monkey fur, silk jersey; anything bizarre 
and outre and fantastic will foster the femme fatale 
idea. 

Even in homeopathic doses this sort of thing will lend 
a "fatal fascination." If you're tired of being called 
"that nice little woman" try dressing exotically. And the 
women will start calling you "that woman" and the 
men will start calling you— on the telephone. 

Now we don't mean to imply that you've got to play 
one of these roles exclusively. In fact the exotic lady 
who works will have to be something else when on the 
job; probably a sophisticate. Contrariwise, the sophisti- 
cate may want to have a fling at being exotic. The 

-132- 



DRESSING IN TEMPO 

coquette will find it advisable on occasion to lay aside 
her coquetry and go patrician, while the patrician may 
be quite romantic when at home. Even the gamine may 
enjoy masquerading as a coquette. 

We have tried to point out your most sympathetic 
role. But every woman is enough of an actress at heart 
to cultivate a repertoire of personalities. Actually more 
than one husband has confided to us that men do get 
tired of looking at the same wife, despite their chival- 
rous denials. A frequent change of pace is the safest 
romance insurance. 



-133- 



ck««wv»^ clathxa X^''dii\x^rvMiivLa -/^tftfU 



CHAPTER TEN 

Which Designers Are For Tou? 

Please don't imagine we mean for you to patronize 
these couturiers directly. But you should know one 
couturier from another, at least the more important 
ones, if only to be able to impress saleswomen that you 
know what's what, and can not be bullied. 

So we shall attempt to do character sketches of the 
European couturiers most copied in this country and 
of the outstanding American designers, too. Then you 
can match them to your type. 



(2 



outunerd 



Alix: Madame Alix is ever the sculptress. She uses silk 
jersey like no one else to create classic or Oriental 
drapery. Chiffon, too, becomes fluid magic in her 
hands. Her beach things inspired by the costumes of 
French fisher-folk are decidely picturesque. Her de- 
signs with Oriental feeling will appeal to the exotic 
and her classic designs and her picturesque drolleries 

-134- 



WHICH DESIGNERS ARE FOR YOU? 

will enchant the romantic. Though this ultra-slender 
type should be careful never to wear the more re- 
vealing fabrics for which Alix has such a liking. 

Hattie Carnegie: Hattie Carnegie both creates her 
own designs and imports Paris models. She goes in for 
richness as if money were no object. She has two 
dominant moods— the patrician and the sophisticated. 

Chanel: Madame Gabrielle Chanel is the rebel who 
started the post-war movement toward simplicity. She 
identified herself with the bright young people who 
smashed all traditions. She practically invented the 
modern sports mode. Her fashions are youth personi- 
fied, generally brash, impudent youth; witness her 
gypsy evening frocks, perfect for the gamine. But she 
has softer moods, too, that are delightful for the 
coquette. 

Helen Cookman: Mrs. Cookman's specialty is tweed, 
though she does beautiful formal coats in marvelous 
woolens and lovely cruise things, too, in strange linens 
and flannels. Her clothes are inimitably wearable be- 
cause she understands so well how to put your best 
feature foremost. Her repertoire includes conserva- 
tive designs for the patrician, piquant models for the 
coquette, and soft dressmaker styles for the romantic. 

Creed: Charles Creed, the descendant of a family who 
served the French nobility before the revolution, 

-135- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

when they migrated to London, has absorbed a good 
deal of the British conservative tradition, which, 
combined with his French flair, results in extraor- 
dinarily beautiful suits that are the specialty of his 
firm. Creed suits are made to order so to speak, for 
the patrician type. 

Norman Hartnell: Hartnell is another London de- 
signer who has achieved world-wide fame. His fortes, 
aside from romantic teagowns, are the English garden- 
party type of frock worn at Ascot, and robes de style. 
Perfect, you see, for the patrician, coquette and ro- 
mantic temperaments. 

Elizabeth Hawes has much in common with Schiapa- 
relli. Both understand the American figure. Both are 
unconventional in their use of fabrics. Both are young 
and dashing and full of whimsy. But Schiaparelli, 
being a Parisienne by adoption at least, is more con- 
cerned with semi-formality than Miss Hawes, and 
Miss Hawes has a second, softer mood that is more 
like Chanel's coquettish moments. Hawes particularly 
likes tweeds, evening clothes and teagowns. For sports 
she likes lovely heathery woolens, suede detail, 
wooden buttons. For evening she does startling color 
schemes. Her clothes are either coquette, gamine, or 
sophisticate— grand for debutantes, young married 
women and college girls. She is a stickler for the im- 
portance of dressing to your type. 

-136- 



■HUH 



WHICH DESIGNERS ARE FOR YOU? 

Muriel King was formerly a fashion artist. She likes to 
do whole wardrobes so she can arrange interchange- 
able combinations that give you an extensive but not 
expensive collection. She sticks patriotically to domes- 
tic fabrics, her favorites being stiff, formal things like 
faille, moire, upholsterer's satin and ottoman— things 
that hold their line. Her designs are conservative and 
extremely wearable. She dresses older women extraor- 
dinarily well. You have, no doubt, placed her as a 
godsend to the patrician type. 

Lanvin: Madame Jeanne Lanvin is of the older French 
school, devoted to lavish elegance, a champion of 
femininity. She is fascinated by rich fabrics, precious 
furs and beautiful embroidery. Her feeling for the 
grand manner makes her an ally for the patrician 
type. And she has always been the mistress of the robe 
de style so expressive of the coquette. Also, she has a 
large clientele of dramatic artists which accounts for 
an occasional picturesque note in her collections suit- 
able for the romantic. Sometimes too, she makes a 
grand gesture toward the exotic, vide the wardrobe 
she did for that ranking exotic of Hollywood, Mar- 
lene Dietrich. 

Lelong: Monsieur Lucien Lelong is a contemporary of 
Captain Molyneux; that is, they both served in the 
World War. Like Molyneux, too, Lelong prefers re- 
strained, wearable clothes. But the difference between 
these two designers is that Molyneux is British, Le- 

-137- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

long French. More than that, Molyneux looks ever 
westward while Lelong has great sympathy with the 
East. So we find him doing conservative gowns for the 
patrician, picturesque things for the romantic and 
carefully adapted Oriental motifs for the exotic. 

Louiseboulanger: Madame Louise Boulanger's talent 
is equally divided between line and color. Her colors 
range from pastels to old master Renaissance tones. 
She is fond of the Renaissance feeling and did a Vene- 
tian evening gown for Lady Abdy that was a master- 
piece in its own right. Or she will do pretty, fluffy, 
ruffly things that have the pastel fragility of a Dresden 
china shepherdess. Consequently she should be the 
guiding star of both the romantic and the coquette. 

Mainbocher: Mr. Main Bocher is an American of 
French parentage, working in Paris. He is an advo- 
cate of simplicity for two good reasons. First, he con- 
siders it the epitome of chic. Second, he realizes it 
helps women to avoid mistakes. Consequently he re- 
lies a great deal on color. His color sense is as out- 
standing as Madame Vionnet's, but quite different. 
He uses black as a foil for his color. His feeling for 
simplicity makes him lean toward two silhouettes; a 
close-fitting sheath or a picturesquely draped, bell- 
like line. The first is ideal for the sophisticate, the 
second perfect for the romantic. And an occasional 
Oriental note creeps in, witness the costume which he 

-138- 



WHICH DESIGNERS ARE FOR YOU? 

did for the Princess of Kapurthala. So he is capable of 
dressing the exotic too. 

Marcel Rochas would not like to be called a masculine 
Chanel. But his designs have youth and often an 
abandon reminiscent of the exuberant Gabrielle, 
witness his Circassian dancer's dress, perfect for the 
gamine. Then again he will do jeune fille frocks or 
negligees that are ideally suited to the coquette. 

MoLYNEUx: Captain Edward Henry Molyneux is an ex- 
officer of the British army. He makes his own sketches 
and dresses his clients from a gentleman's point of 
view. He makes them look like "ladies." He visualizes 
his clothes in the setting in which they will be worn 
—and in motion— which makes them eminently wear- 
able. And he has the army officer's passion for superb 
tailoring. Consequently his feeling for cut and fit and 
handling of detail amount to genius. His slender eve- 
ning silhouette is distinctly patrician although now 
and then he bursts out and does something daring for 
the sophisticate, or a crinoline or robe de style design 
that is pure coquetry. However, he is at heart de- 
lightfully British, restrained, conservative. 

Germaine Monteil came to this country from France. 
Her designs are less revolutionary than Schiaparelli's 
but definitely dramatic. Such things as sequin bands 
echoed by a sequin butterfly in the hair, fur on the 
peplum of a suit instead of the collar, the unexpected 

-139- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

generally in a rather formal mood, place her unmis- 
takably as a sophisticated spirit. 

Paquin is an ideal mother and daughter firm. It, too, 
belongs to the old school, preoccupied chiefly with 
older women. But the house has recognized the de- 
mand for young clothes too and answered it with de- 
lightful jeune fille frocks. However, the greater part 
of any Paquin collection is aimed at the patrician, 
tempting her to extravagance with fabulously rich 
fabrics. 

Maggy Rouff: (Madame Besan^on de Wagner) is 
young and charming and smart. Her tempo is modem 
and so she inclines toward sheath silhouettes and 
striking color schemes designed for the sophisticate. 
However she has a feeling for drapery, too, which she 
uses in dressmaker frocks of intricate detail which 
are admirable for the patrician. 

ScHiAPARELLi: Madame Elsa Schiaparelli is an Italian 
who has conquered Paris in a way that makes Napo- 
leon look like a dilettante. Each year her collections 
are reported "daring as ever." Her use of fabric is al- 
ways unexpected. She is devoted to colorful tweeds 
and blithely uses them for evening wraps and cock- 
tail jackets. She is a great believer in jackets and she 
likes pajamas for dining in, dinner suits for dining 
out. Her fastenings are fantastic. She uses anything 
that strikes her fancy from the famous Schiaparelli **S" 

— 140 — 



WHICH DESIGNERS ARE FOR YOU? 

to the starfish she saw on the beach. Her prints, too, 
are striking and diverting, from the Duchess of Wind- 
sor's celebrated lobster to the scattered pages of a love 
letter. She will use anything for detail— gold foil, 
ruby stones, horsehair lace, cockle shells, rococo em- 
broidery—with indiscriminate facility. In sports 
clothes, she really lets herself go. And Schiaparelli 
letting herself go presents a spectacle unequaled on 
land or sea. Schiaparelli has her younger moments 
that are distinctly gamine. In one of these she dashed 
ofiP a short-skirted evening dress that was much copied. 
But primarily she is a sophisticate. 

Vionnet: Madame Madeleine Vionnet is another artist 
of the old school. Like Lanvin, Vionnet is intensely 
feminine, but her nature is more retiring, her clothes 
have less period feeling and are more wearable. She is 
famous for her bias cut dresses with flattering neck- 
lines. Long ago her draped cowl made history. A 
later version of this feeling for soft neck-lines is found 
in her beautifully shirred camisole bodices. Vionnet 
has a distinct feeling for soft, feminine fabrics. She 
does garden frocks in the Rossetti manner, combining 
three or four pastels. Her collections are nicely bal- 
anced between the patrician and the romantic types. 
Her conservative feeling is eminently patrician, her 
use of color, often inspired by flowers, definitely 
artistic. 



-141- 



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WHICH DESIGNERS ARE FOR YOU? 



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Agnes: Madame Agnes has a definitely feminine touch. 
She twists jewel-toned velvets into perfect little tur- 
bans for the romantic or exaggerates them into a vol- 
cano of color for the exotic. Or she twitches ribbon 
into a pouf over one eye and cuts away most of the 
hat to make people stare in disbelief at the sophisti- 
cate. Another dominant characteristic of Agnes is her 
fondness for demure bonnets and baby caps. She is 
mad about color and her use of it is sensitively 
artistic 

Alix^ past mistress of drapery, is fond of Hindu eflEects 
to top off her Oriental burnooses and saris and swath- 
ings generally. So she is a kindred spirit to the exotic 
or the romantic. 

Louise Bourbon is best appreciated by the patrician be- 
cause of her discreet restraint. However, at times she 
takes a fling at dramatic severity for the benefit of the 
sophisticate. 

Eric Bragaard has an austere dignity which ranges 
from the patrician to the sophisticate. He likes tall 
hauteur. He gave great impetus to the postilion hat. 

Lilly DAcnf: is a Frenchwoman working in New York. 
She does a large custom business as well as designing 

-143- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

for the smarter shops. Because she makes a fetish of 
fitting the hat to the personality as well as the head, 
she is all things to all women, though she is not par- 
ticularly interested in the exotic or the gamine. 

Rose Descat makes a specialty of softly manipulated 
felts designed especially for the patrician who prefers 
something more feminine than a fedora with tweeds. 

Fernan de Flory is a great admirer of the ingenue and 
the romantic, witness his innocent bonnets and pic- 
turesque brimmed hats. Or his Madame Bovary mood 
that has a sort of wickedly naive feeling which will 
appeal to the sophisticate. 

Maria Guy divides her attention between soft dignity 
for the patrician and brash whimsy for the gamine. 

John-Frederic, a house directed by two talented young 
men working in New York, has a penchant for pic- 
turesque brims and a color sense unequaled on this 
side of the water. John-Frederic's combinations are 
ideal for the romantic but their custom work has also 
made them past masters at suiting individuals of every 
type. If you want a hat "just made for you" you might 
do well to splurge and have an * 'original by John- 
Frederic." 

Marthe divides her attention between the coquette 
and the sophisticate, sometimes being feminine with 
-144- 



WHICH DESIGNERS ARE FOR YOU? 

toques and off-the-face effects, sometimes dashing and 
daring with inventions that defy description. 

Reboux is the dramatist of the Paris milliners, offering 
stark severity to the sophisticate as in the case of the 
famous white Homburg, or, for the exotic, bizarre 
headdresses rather than hats in colors of barbaric 
splendor. 

ScHiAPARELLi of ucccssity makes hats to go with her 
unique clothes. As in her costumes so too in her 
millinery, she uses fantastic fabrics, unexpected lines. 
She will copy anything, witness her Texas-twister 
tornado hat, and her bird-cage model, and her lamb 
chop complete with white frill. She is always breath- 
taking so she suits the more daring types. She does 
swooping things suited to the sophisticate, or, turn- 
ing whimsical, she invents mad little caps for the 
gamine. 

Talbot: Madame Suzanne Talbot is the aristocrat of 
the Paris modistes. She has charming restraint that 
will be appreciated by the patrician and a softer mood 
of ingenuous coquetry. 

Suzy: Madame Suzy's hats always seem to be in motion. 
Usually they are distinctly modern in feeling, rakishly 
atilt or quite rolling as to brim, or they have bows or 
feathers milling about or veils leaping forward with 
breathless eagerness. Their lines will appeal to the 
sophisticate and the gamine. 

-145- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Sally Victor does innocent, ingenuous styles for the 
coquette, dramatically sophisticated things like her 
toreador hat in bull-baiting red for the sophisticate, 
or rolled off-the-face brims for the gamine. 



146 — 



^^ 



PART TWO 



il\jL siXU^jjjJiL c^^db^^ss^A — 



ii\/L silUujJtXijL o^cMhxA — 



CHAPTER ELEVEN 

Manners and Costumes 

Street Clothes: We may thank our stars that the 
afternoon dress is a vanishing American custom. You 
can wear a suit or a tailored dress nowadays from break- 
fast to cocktails, and through cocktails too, unless it's a 
real party. 

Of course, if you have an important luncheon date, 
you will wear your nicest blouse with your suit and furs 
instead of a scarf. And you'll wear your pet hat. But 
that's as far as you need go. 

However, you must understand that there are suits 
and suits. Swagger suits belong in the country and are 
worn with sweaters and fedora hats. Usually they are 
rough or monotone tweeds. But we can't say that all 
tweeds belong in the country. Because there are the 
lovely soft Lintons and lacy tweeds that lend themselves 
to tailleur and dressmaker styles and go quite elegantly 
to formal luncheons. 

Tailleur is nothing more than the French word for a 
tailored suit. And a "dressmaker suit" is simply a softer 
suit, somewhat more flared or draped or in some way 
feminized. While theoretically the dressmaker suit is 

-151- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

more formal, in actual practice the two are just about 
interchangeable. The choice depends largely on the in- 
dividual figure. So, while a tailored silk blouse really 
belongs with a tailleur, and a softer lingerie blouse with 
a dressmaker suit, both may take both without raising 
any eyebrows. Also tailleurs and dressmaker suits both 
need fur scarfs while a swagger suit with a fur scarf is 
unthinkable. The tailleur needs a tailored hat of felt or 
straw while the dressmaker suit implies a hat softened 
with wings or flowers or bows. 

Now for the conventions about suits. Some women 
will not take off their hats while wearing one. There is 
much feeling about this. Many bosses feel a girl hasn't 
settled down to work till she takes off her hat. So, in the 
office, it is politic to doff your millinery promptly, even 
on entering the lobby if you're a little late. In stores, 
however, executives have to wear hats or they are forever 
being taken for salesgirls and asked to wait on customers. 
People who don't understand this think buyers are 
affected in this respect. Socially, however, if you want to 
show you know what's what, keep your hat on except in 
the paddock. Even if you're receiving for luncheon at 
home in a suit, it's correct according to the old school 
to wear your hat. But the new school says you may take 
it off. So— suit yourself. 

Next you'll want to know if you may take off your suit 
jacket. No, not according to Hoyle. The rules for this 
are much the same as those for a man. He takes off his 
coat in the privacy of his office and so may you. But this 
is really deshabille. Please don't make it worse by wear- 
ing a sleeveless blouse. That is the unforgivable sin. The 

— ir,2 — 



MANNERS AND COSTUMES 

only time you can correctly take off your coat is when 
your blouse is worn outside your skirt. For Heaven's 
sake don't just pull out your shirttail and think that 
will do. Most blouses just aren't cut for it. They billow 
diabolically below the belt. But toppers that tie in a sash 
at the waist, Russian blouses cut to go outside, weskit 
blouses, out-and-out tunics, and sweaters that match 
the skirt and fit snugly at the waist so they don't play 
fast and loose with your midriff— all can dispense with 
their jackets and still retain the dignity and integrity 
of a costume. 

While speaking of street clothes, we may as well dis- 
cuss the matter of what can and what cannot appear on 
the street. Most women are uncomfortable on the street 
without some sort of wrap. In summer, this becomes an 
acute problem. Is this convention silly? Not if you con- 
sider its raison d'etre. Women, even in this day and age, 
find it expedient to cover themselves in public and wear 
decollete only among friends. True, times have changed 
and long sleeves are no longer de rigueur on the street. 
But you must have some sort of sleeve even in summer, 
and gloves seem to lend discretion to above-the-elbow 
sleevelets. If you don't care for frank comment from un- 
known admirers, you'll want to make assurance doubly 
sure with a jacket or cape; obviously capes are coolest. 
Or, if you do wear a so-called tennis dress, practically 
sleeveless and without a jacket or cape, pick one with 
buttons down the front that makes you feel as if you 
were wearing a coat dress. In the fall, a fur scarf will 
give you moral support when you appear coatless in 
your first fall dress. 

-153- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

As for sunbacks, untanned stockingless legs, shorts, 
and their ilk, we deplore them on the street, even in the 
tiniest village. And we're not being evil minded. It sim- 
ply looks as if you could not possibly belong to even one 
country club or beach club. Else you'd never con- 
descend to do your tanning on Main Street. (You can 
always throw on a beach coat.) As for slacks, they're dif- 
ferent. Was it Doctor Mary Walker who always insisted 
trousers were more modest than skirts? The Chinese 
think so. They dress their women in trousers and their 
men in skirts. We'd say slacks are as good as the figure 
that wears them. Wear them in the village if you think 
you can get away with it. 

Country Clothes: Now while Paris is the arbiter 
of town fashions, country clothes should have an Eng- 
lish county feeling. Just what are country clothes? Well 
it boils down to this. The country gentleman's lady 
seldom wears anything but sports clothes, party clothes 
and negligees. 

Sports clothes, which of course include active and 
spectator sports things, must be extremely good. But they 
should never look dressed up. For example, those peren- 
nial Scotch tweeds should be superlatively tailored but 
not obviously pressed. Riding boots should be excellent 
leather but mellowed by much saddle soap. 

As to other fabrics, restrict yourself to wools and cot- 
tons. Silk is definitely taboo for sports, except shirtings, 
tie-silks and Liberty prints. Though satin has bobbed up 
lately in a wash edition for sports. 

Now just as each sport has its own season, you will 
find that it has also its own perfect fabric. For tennis it's 

-154- 



MANNERS AND COSTUMES 



pique because it d oesn't wilt . For g ^olf it^ p^nnpl hp- 
cause i t's both warm and light. For sailing, it 's gahardija/> 
l)ecause it's both wind proof and watex proof. For riding 
il'a vv hipLUid bi xFrhpslrnd n INTHtnn r mv 

Spectators at tennis may wear linen or the sports 
satin we mentioned; at. golf matches o r \}nrfie shows, 
t weeds. And velveteen makes a good, warm, but fairly 
dressed-up after-sports costume for winter week-ends in 
the country. 

W^e spoke of sweaters in connection with country 
swagger suits but they deserve a word on their own, too. 
It has become the fashion to be perverse about sweaters 
—to break the rules and dress them up with pearls; just 
a single strand and very thin; or with clips or barpins of 
colored brilliants or synthetic precious stones. It's effec- 
tive. It's not in the rules, but it has become a sort of 
unwritten law. 

Country party clothes will include semi-formal or^ 
ganzas and mousselines of the garden party or afternoon- 
at-the-country-club variety, and dance frocks of cotton, 
net, lace; or printed linen with a velveteen cape. 

Negligees for the country include breakfast coats and 
teagowns. The English designers do both well. 

The net of all this is: don't make the mistake of dress- 
ing down to the country. Dress casually but not negli- 
gently. That means put comfort first but insist upon 
impeccable cut and fit, and self-respecting fabrics. 

Travel Clothes: The cosmopolitan attitude toward 
traveling is to travel light. And traveling covers a multi- 
tude of sins against the etiquette of dress. Catching a 
train is sufficient excuse for going to a dance in a suit. 

-155- 



U 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

However you must not err the other way round. A suit 
with a topcoat is the perfect travel costume. In cold 
weather, a tweed suit with a furred or fur topcoat is 
ideal. In semi-tropical climates like California, a thin 
wool suit or a cotton tweed suit is unbeatable. The wool 
suit might have a furred matching topcoat. The cotton 
tweed might have an unfurred flannel reefer. In the 
tropics, a Palm Beach suit does well all by itself. (All 
these clothes are practically immune to wrinkles.) In 
choosing a cruise coat be careful to get one with a lap 
generous enough to cover you comfortably as you re- 
cline in your steamer chair. 

For evenings on shipboard, lace is the fabric par ex- 
cellence because it solves your pressing problems. 

Shoes are the things that take up space and break 
porters' backs and turn aviation officials gray from 
worrying about excess poundage. Try to compromise on 
two extra pairs besides those you're wearing; evening 
slippers and sports shoes, perhaps, besides the inevitable 
mules. Naturally you will wear medium heels on the 
ship's deck, if you value your neck. 

Hats should be packable, like those much advertised 
fold-up affairs, and non-blowable; close-fitting cloches or 
small hats well anchored by a backstrap. And on a cruise 
take plenty of large kerchiefs to tie up your curls se- 
curely. 

For a train or boat, deshabille should include Pullman 
pajamas of some dark silk with a matching robe— some- 
thing discreet that won't take the porter's mind off his 
work when you lurch 'down the aisle to do your face in 
the morning. 

- 156- 



MANNERS AND COSTUMES 

Through it all the big idea is to work out a minimum 
of suitable, adaptable, packable clothes and toilet ac- 
cessories. 

Town, Five-to-seven Clothes: The first and often 
the only change in a busy woman's day comes at cock- 
tail time. Her cocktail costume may be street- or ankle- 
length. The street length has become extremely popular 
and is considerably smarter because an evening wrap 
would be silly with such informal clothes. And a street- 
length coat over an ankle-length dress looks like nothing 
so much as a wedding in the Ghetto. Here is where the 
vogue for fur capes is so very apropos. Because fur capes 
can be used for the street and over ankle-length cocktail 
frocks too, if you must wear them. In the final analysis 
they're actually economical. 

When it gets too cold for a fur cape, you switch to 
your fur coat. Think about this when you buy a fur 
coat and you'll see the advantage of getting it in a three- 
quarter length so when it goes out with an ankle-length 
cocktail costume it won't broadcast the fact that you 
wear it in the daytime, too. 

Underneath these wraps, long sleeved jackets of bright 
colors or aglitter with sequins, paillettes, or lame are 
practically a cocktail convention, probably because the 
jacket and skirt idea, essentially a daytime note, inter- 
preted in rich fabrics, makes just the right compromise 
for a sundown costume. 

Restaurant Dining: The best solution for dining 
at a fairly formal restaurant if you haven't come on from 
cocktails is a dinner suit or ensemble of some rich fabric 
with an almost floor length skirt and a longish wrap. 

-157- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Throwing the coat over the back of your chair will re- 
veal a brilliant jacket or bodice. Here you have the per- 
fect compromise between the formality required in the 
evening and the discretion required in public. (This 
outfit means ''black tie" for your escort.) Of course, the 
supper clubs expect you to come in full evening regalia. 

Dining with Friends: When you can't pin your 
hostess down to saying definitely "We are dressing,** 
those cocktail jackets come in handy again, over decol- 
lete evening dresses. You can peek at the guests as you 
sweep into the dressing room and decide then and there 
whether to take your jacket or leave it. Again you may 
wear your fur cape or coat. 

Gala Evenings: Everybody knows that this means 
decolletage and a conventional evening wrap. But the 
question of evening gloves still puzzles some people. It 
used to be a dreadful faux pas for a lady, or gentleman 
either, to dance without gloves. Don't you remember 
the agonies Jo suffered in Little Women because she 
had spoiled her gloves? Well that convention has worn 
itself out. And now we rarely see evening gloves except 
at a wedding or the opera, or at extremely formal balls, 
although some robe de style evening gowns need gloves 
to complement the costume. With a dinner suit, nat- 
urally, you would wear black suede or white kid gloves. 
But with an evening wrap you may quite correctly wear 
none at all, or for warmth, short white kid gloves. 

What to Wear at Your Own Party: If you give a 
tea, you are supposed to dress more formally than your 
guests. The theory is they will come in street clothes, 

-158- 



MANNERS AND COSTUMES 

probably suits or tailored dresses. While you, being at 
home, should be discovered in an afternoon frock. The 
assumption is, you have not dressed up for your own 
party. You simply are wearing your usual afternoon-at- 
home costume. For that reason, a lot of people nowadays 
are receiving in hostess gowns or housecoats! But when 
you give a dinner or an evening party; when people 
come "dressed" you are supposed to dress less formally 
than your guests to disparage your own party. 

What to Wear to Someone Else's Party: Some- 
times your hostess gives you a clue by saying "black 
tie" or "white tie." Black tie means semi-formality; din- 
ner dresses with covered decolletages or dinner suits, 
the sort of thing suggested for restaurant dining, though 
here a hat is not obligatory. When she says "white tie" 
you go the limit of formality. When she gives you no 
clue, underdress rather than overdress. You always will 
be more comfortable. 

Envoi: It all adds up to what Emerson said— "Man- 
ners are not idle, they are the result of thought." Cos- 
tumes too are the result of taking thougnt to taste, and 
there's no accounting for taste except on one count. 
Everybody agre es that taste is a sense of the fitness o f 
things.. That is your only limitation. If you can live up 
to that, you can express your own individual taste as 
much as you like— the more the better, because that is 
what makes you interesting. 



-159 



ii\A /tUouuce^ o^ciStkxA — 



CHAPTER TWELVE 



Avoiding Mesalliances 

Ensembling: Do you know what makes expensive 
things expensive— what makes them cost more than the 
materials, the dyes, the workmanship and the cut and 
fit? It is the ensembling— the look of belonging together 
—that takes thought, not talent. You can think out cos- 
tumes quite as well as the most famous couturier if 
you put your mind to it. We don't say you have her 
flair for color, her genius for line, her training in cut- 
ting. But we do say you can choose things that go tOv 
gether. You must think of your clothes as if they were 
people. You introduce them to each other. If there is 
no bond between them, they simply won't mix. 

You pay a great deal for carefully worked out en- 
sembles. Yet you can achieve an ensemble yourself for 
very little money. We once saw a woman turn the trick at 
a cost of exactly six cents. She had bought a black linen 
coat dress whose closing was edged with heavy ecru lace 
of an ordinary pattern. She had a black fabric bonnet. 
So she looked over the lace counter of her favorite de- 
partment store, spied the identical lace being sold by 

— 160 — 



AVOIDING MJ^SALLIANCES 

the yard, bought enough for a halo round the face-line 
of her hat and made it absolutely belong to that dress. 
Her sixpence had given her that custom look. The ways 
to do this are infinite. Sometimes it doesn't even cost 
sixpence. 

It's the easiest thing in the world to wed your winter 
hat and coat till death do them part. If the coat has 
Persian on it, a touch of Persian on the hat makes them 
one ensemble that looks not merely flung together but 
absolutely made for each other. 

If you have a gray suit with a narrow brown leather 
belt, get a gray felt hat with a brown leather band. Little 
milliners are particularly interested in doing this sort 
of thing, so don't be afraid to ask. They'll whip off a 
bit of trimming and stick on what you want while you 
wait. They ought to be encouraged to indulge their 
talent. 

Incidentally, the shoe people are making a point of 
ensembling shoes and bags, matching the leathers and 
repeating the same motif on both. Whenever possible 
take advantage of such service. 

This trick of repeating the same motif is the easiest 
and most elementary principle of assembling a costume. 
The next step is somewhat more difficult. 

Combining Lines: When you buy a coat or jacket to 
go over a dress, you must consider four lines— neck-line, 
waist-line, sleeve-line and hem-line. If your coat has a 
collarless neck-line, your dress must supply a collar, or 
you must wear a scarf of some sort. Remember that one 

-161- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

neck-line— dress or coat— must be collared or filled in. 

Your coat and dress must coincide at the waist-line, 
otherwise you'll get a bunchy effect, and when you throw 
the coat open, the discovery of two waist-lines disagreeing 
violently will be disastrous. Also, you can not wear a fitted 
coat over a suit without looking like a piece of over- 
stuffed furniture. This does not, however, necessitate a 
long swagger coat. Infinitely smarter are short box jack- 
ets. They can even go over furred suits. Also, when con- 
sidering waist-lines remember that a dress with a sash 
is going to give a hunchbacked effect under a fitted coat. 

So too with sleeves; padded shoulders can't go under 
raglan shoulders, obviously, or full sleeves under fitted 
ones. 

Finally with hem-lines, if both coat and dress are full 
length they must hang the same distance from the floor 
or the effect is slovenly. Fortunately this is a simple 
matter for your tailor to adjust. 



Combining Colors: The late Jean Patou said that 
one woman in a hundred can be trusted with a contrast. 
We say no woman in a hundred, and perhaps one in a 
thousand can be trusted with two contrasts. In fact two 
contrasts are never better than one or even as good. So 
let's make it a rule to stick to two colors at the most. 
In this connection we exclude jewelry. You might find 
a black dress with a chartreuse chiffon handkerchief 
tucked into the high neck vastly improved by a jade 
clip. But that's advanced stuff. Let's stick to first princi- 
ples. 

— 162 ~ 



AVOIDING MESALLIANCES 

1. Your hat should match your coat and shoes. Then 
when you take off your coat if your dress is a different 
shade, the same contrast above and below it will give a 
finished look. 

2. Your shoes should match your bag if possible. We 
have explained that this is comparatively easy nowadays. 

3. Always repeat a colorful accent at least once, but 
not too often. A touch of color on your hat repeated by 
gloves or boutonniere or belt or blouse or jewelry looks 
well. But don't harp on that accent. All five accessories 
repeating it in chorus would be fearfully monotonous. 

Combining Fabrics: Never combine two different ma- 
terials in the same class; that is, never two different 
furs, laces, crepes, wools, cottons, or tweeds. On the 
other hand you can combine silk and satin, satin and 
\\'ool, wool and fur, tweed and flannel. Why not wool 
with cotton? Well, here things begin to get complicated. 
Rather than list endless correct combinations we shall 
try to discover the underlying principles so you can in- 
vent new and tasteful combinations of your own. Let's 
divide our materials into four groups; sports, street, 
matinee or cocktails, and evening; and agree to make 
combinations only within those groups. 

I. Sports Materials: 

Fabrics are rough or hairy: Harris or Donegal tweeds, 

homespuns, angoras 
or man-inspired: tie-silk, shirting, flannel. Palm Beach 

cloth, gabardine 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

or crude: linen, crash, string, cretonne, cotton tweed 
Hats are man-inspired too: felt, tweed, Panama, rough 

straw 
Leathers are rough: alligator, pigskin, reversed calf, 

buffalo, buckskin 
Furs are shaggy or heavy: wolf, lynx, raccoon, badger, 

beaver, nutria 
Jewelry is: wood, metal, leather, shell 

Now we get combinations such as: 

Costume Hat Shoes Bag Gloves 

tweed felt alligator alligator pigskin 

wool tweed buffalo pigskin chamois 

gabardine Panama gabardine linen linen 

linen crash " linen " " 

shirting " buckskin buckskin stitched 

fabric 

The main thing here is to stick to the same fabric as 
much as posible, keeping the felt and heavy leathers 
with the wools, the straw and lighter leathers with the 
summer fabrics. 



II. Street Fabrics: 

Fabrics are softer: Linton or monotone tweeds, fine- 
spun wools, silks, foulards, silk jerseys 
Hats are softer too: fine felts, velours, antelope 
or finely woven: bakus, ballibuntls, starched linens, 
etc. 

— 164 — 



AVOIDING MESALLIANCES 

Furs are fine-haired: silver fox, sable, baum marten, 
mink 

or sleek: Persian lamb, galyak, mole, broadtail, cara- 
cul 

Leathers are smooth: calf or kid 

Jewelry is: semi-precious stones 

And we get combinations such as: 

Costume Hat Shoes Bag Gloves 

Wool or soft fine felt calf calf doeskin 

tweed 

silk jersey or baku or kid kid kid 

foulard ballibuntl 

The point here is to combine similar textures. The 
sleek finish of silk takes sleek straws and glace leathers. 

III. Matinee or Cocktail Fabrics: 

Fabrics are rich: velvet, satin, duvetyn, broadcloth, 

chiffon, taffeta 
Hats are rich too: antelope, velvet, satin 
Furs are precious: mink, silver fox, blue fox, sable 
Leathers are mat: antelope, doeskin, suede 
Jewelry is: pearls, crystal, gold, silver 

All these combine beautifully. 

IV. Evening Materials: 

Fabrics are rich: slipper satin, velvet, brocade, moire, 
lame, chiffon, net, lace, taffeta, crepe 

-165- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Furs are precious: ermine, chinchilla, mink, silver 

fox, sable 
Shoes are: satin, velvet, brocade, gold or silver kid, 

crepe 
Bags are: satin, velvet, brocade, gold or silver kid 
Jewelry is: precious stones 



So you might get 


combination 


s such as: 




Costume 


Wrap 


Slippers 


Bag 


Slipper satin 


ermine 


satin 


brocade 


velvet 


chinchilla 


velvet 


velvet 


moire 


mink 


silver kid 


silver kid 


lame 


velvet 


velvet 


velvet 


chiffon 


velvet 


crepe 


kid 


net 


taffeta 


brocade 


brocade 


crepe 


brocade 


crepe 


brocade 



Combining Styles: This is the subtlest art of all. You 
know vaguely that country tweeds need walking shoes, 
tailored suits take tailored hats, and so forth. But just 
what is a walking shoe or a tailored hat? You have to 
learn to sense the feeling of your costume and let your 
accessories reflect it right on down to your handker- 
chiefs. First let's see what types of costumes you'll wear 
in the different groups we mentioned. Then let's take 
up accessories to go with them. 



Costumes: 

For sports: swagger tweeds, shirtmaker frocks, blazers 
-166- 



AVOIDING MESALLIANCES 

For the street: tailleurs, dressmaker suits, fitted coats, 
tailored dresses, jacket dresses, coat dresses 

Matinees or cocktails: furred suits, afternoon dresses 
with fur capes, skirts with cocktail jackets 

For evening: decoUetages with evening wraps 

Hats: 

For sports: fedora, riding bowler, Breton sailor, 

cloche 
For tailored street clothes: tricorne, pillbox, derby, 

sailor. Trimmings will be quills or stiff bows 
For dressmaker clothes: turban, flower cap, bonnet, 

halo hat; any soft shape will do 
For fur coats: small or tall hats that won't interfere 

with your collar; usually the same types as those 

worn with dressmaker suits 
For summer street clothes: brimmed hats— anything 

from a coolie dish to a picture hat 



Shoes: 

For sports: low-heeled brogues, tongued oxfords, ghil- 
lies or low-heeled sandals 

For suits: oxfords with built-up heels, plain opera 
pumps 

For coats and dresses: opera pumps, two-eyelet ox- 
fords, step-in pumps 

For summer clothes: sandals 

For cocktail clothes: low-cut sandals with high heels 

For evening clothes: pumps, open sandals 

— 167 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Gloves: 

For sports: gloves with contrasting stitching; widely 
flared cuffs 

For suits: short mitts buttoned at the back; conven- 
tional pull-ons 

For dresses and coats: six button-length pull-ons' 

For summer clothes: fabric gloves because they are so 
easily washed; washable doeskins 

For evening clothes: here gloves are a matter of per- 
sonal taste 

Bags: 

For sports: swagger bag 

For suits or coats: envelope or pouch 

For cocktail clothes: envelope with jeweled clasp 

For evening clothes: small pouch or vanity 

All this by no means covers every fabric or style but it 
serves to give you the general idea. 



-168- 



iiu /zIu^ulaaJCl o(cW<u2/4 — 



CHAPTER THIRTEEN 



Local Color 



Consciously or unconsciously we adapt the color of 
our clothes to our background just as wild creatures do 
their coloring. Anybody who has ridden one station in 
a New York subway knows what happens to white 
gloves there— you simply have to carry spares in your 
pocket. You develop a defense mechanism of protective 
coloring. 

Undoubtedly black is the smartest thing in New 
York, particularly in the afternoon. However since good 
black things are expensive and cheap black things look 
charity child-ish, black has become the uniform of the 
rich and chic while the rest of us get by quite nicely 
in carefully calculated browns and grays and greens and 
wines. 

On the other hand, black is an economical color too. 
It doesn't show grime, though if you're fastidious you 
will have it cleaned anyway. Still it does not tattle about 
cinders collected en route to an appointment. What's 
more important, it goes with just about every other 
color. Its metamorphoses are endless. And people don't 

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DESIGNING WOMEN 

remember it as they do a more conspicuous color. They 
never can be sure just how many black dresses you own. 

But cheap black dyes look rusty, and cheap black 
fabrics get shiny. Incidentally, don't wash black linen- 
have it cleaned. You'll find it saves money in the end 
for washed black linen gets shiny and soon has to be 
discarded. ___-..^~-™~™-~--»__™_...,,-^ 

/'/Slack, then, has to be goo^. A nd it usually needs,x e- 
( lifel. .n ils^may be a t^ ch^oIlvKItfcror color^ra bit x>f 
Ijgwelry T^Or it may be a contrasting black fabric; a bit 
of cire ribbon on a black felt hat, a narrow edging of 
black lace on a black straw's brim, a wisp of veil on a 
black dinner hat, a panel of the reverse side down the 
front of a reversible c repe dress ^ablack galyak cape on | 
a black wool coat.JTBlack always should be dramatized/ 
ecauseThe^ pos sibilities of dra ipa4n-bladL-are so 
ndous. there is absolutely nothing so striking for 
that extremely modern requirement of a town ward- 
robe, the five-to-seven costume. 

On the contrary, where is the distinction of a black 
dress on the golf links? It would look as out of place as 
a man's dress suit. In strong sunlight you want strong, 
cheery colors, not pastels, mind you, unless you want to 
look like the musical comedy star who went riding in 
powder blue jodhpurs. And never wear those namby- 
pamby colors thv, washable silks come in. Silk, except 
tie-silk, has no business even looking on at sports, any- 
way. Wools, linens, and cottons are infinitely preferable. 
But to get back to the color situation, even those hand- 
some sky blues that are duplicated so beautifully by 

- 170 — 



LOCAL COLOR 

flannel and linen need some strong accent— raspberry 
buttons for instance. Pastel tweed jackets are permissible 
only if they are reinforced with tweed skirts of a more 
decided color— a dusty rose jacket with a dubonnet skirt 
would be grand. And for November days, heathery 
Scotch tweeds are correct. Riding clothes should run to 
woodsy browns and hunter greens with even a blazer 
of hunter's pink, which, as you know, is bright red. 
Formal habits are another matter. Any store with a rid- 
ing department can show you the formal black outfit 
with white stock required. White is the rule for tennis 
tournament play, though informally you can wear 
bright shorts and^erseys^'F or thebeach you will wanLJT 
rterra cottas, turquoise, coral , ajid sunny velloj^^/ For ? 

'V^hn n^TwhitE' and j^vy, ^hiip fnr winter spnrfs any 

Strong color from navy to holly red is correct. 

On the other hand, when dressing up in the country, 
for daylight dining or a wedding in the garden, we turn 
to the soft pastels of flowers— periwinkle or delphinium 

blue, rose shades, sweet pea colors. _____——_ 

^-^raveling by train, we go into black again. By car/ 
[or plane, we prefer beig es that will not show the ^"*'*' * 
1 At sea we prefer g p^ayj^nd in southern waters, dusty 
pastels. A little attention to this will make you seem at 
home abroad so that if you're not dressed exactly like 
other people, they will be the ones who look wrong. 

For evening, nothing is so effective as jewel tones. 
You know, yourself, you need more make-up in the 
evening. But did you ever think that your dress needs 
more color, too? The sweet young thing who wears 

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DESIGNING WOMEN 

pastels may be perfectly adorable in them but the stag 
line can't see her at all, literally. Greens wash out under 
artificial lights unless they're vivid jade tones. Orchid 
goes brown at night— only amethyst can hold its own 
after dark. Blue needs the brilliance of turquoise or 
sapphire to put it over and give it an exciting night 
life. And so on. 

It seems too bad that the craze for black should have 
crowded out to such an extent these brilliant colors 
that can be worn only at night. The effect of a couple 
dancing, both completely in black except for the man's 
gleaming shirt bosom is a somber spectacle not at all 
in keeping with the occasion. Men's fashions have cut 
the pageantry of the ballroom in half. It seems stupid 
for women to dispense with the rest of it. Of course 
two great arguments in favor of black have been that it 
can be metamorphosed ad infinitum and that it stands 
out amongst colors. However that last argument is be- 
coming beside the point. Now that there is such a pre- 
ponderance of black, it is the colors that stand out 
against the prevalent black as a background. The same 
arguments and the same situation in relation to colors 
holds true of white. We hail with enthusiasm the im- 
minent reaction toward color. 



— 172 — 



il\M. siiAjsujjiSijL c^^clS^isSlA — 



CHAPTER FOURTEEN 



Platform Clothes 



Dressing to address a group of women or preside at 
a club meeting or sing or play in concert is the acid 
test of anybody's taste. For you are not a person apart 
as in the theater. You meet the audience afterward. You 
are expected to make a special effort. Yet you are ludi- 
crous if you get yourself up as if for a ball. All the 
while you are talking or performing, the listeners are 
studying your clothes. Many a failure has been due not 
to a poor performance but to lack of audience sympa- 
thy. And all too often, a poorly chosen dress is to blame. 

We could cite countless examples. There was the 
really capable singer who flopped. Maybe you can guess 
why when we describe her get-up. She was large, as 
most singers are. And her dyed red hair was frizzed 
about her face. She wore yards of the most highly 
glazed satin imaginable in a virulent green. Right there 
you can spot two mistakes. The satin highlighted every 
lamentable curve and the color fought with her hair. 
But wait. She added crimson slippers and bracelets. The 

-173- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

audience's nerves were rasped raw the moment she ap- 
peared. We will spare you further details except to say 
that she dispensed completely with her short neck by 
wearing a collar that stood in the rear halfway up her 
head, a train three yards long, draped from the waist 
instead of the neck, so it cut her height about in half, 
and a breastplate of diamante work that glittered with 
every breath she drew. Do you wonder no one in the 
audience could keep her mind on the lady's voice? 

What should she have worn? Well, not satin, no train 
at all since she hadn't the height for it, and no standing 
collar. Chartreuse would have thrown her hair into 
flattering relief. And crepe would have been far kinder 
to her figure. 

Then there was the dark lady who spoke on beauty. 
She, too, was massive. She wore an orchid chiffon gown, 
an overpowering purple picture hat, purple gloves on 
her large hands and an heroic corsage of violets smack 
on the brisket. 

Can you pick flaws in that? The chiffon clung, of 
course. That was her first mistake. The orchid was not 
flattering to her dark skin. Her neck was too short for 
the tremendous hat. And she was far too buxom for any 
corsage worn in that particular spot. 

Shall we dress her over? We would do her in du- 
bonnet— a better shade for her skin and a darker tone 
than orchid, consequently more slenderizing. The fab- 
ric of her gown might be faille. We would give her 
matching gloves to let the hands go unnoticed. Her hat 
would be a Dubonnet tricorne. And for the festive touch 

-174- 



^ 



PLATFORM CLOTHES 

of the corsage, we would put an orchid or two on one 
shoulder. 

Do you know that few feminine singers will engage a 
woman accompanist for the very feminine reason that 
they wish no competition for their gowns on the plat- 
form? We can't all be prima donnas, of course. And if 
you are to address your club, you are quite likely to 
encounter stiff sartorial competition from your best 
friend sitting right beside you. 

In such a situation there is the old trick of under- 
dressing that seldom fails. We have seen it worked time 
and again. We saw it demonstrated one afternoon with 
striking success in the case of two singers. The first, a 
nobly proportioned creature, came tripping on the stage 
in a skin-tight sheath of yellow satin that made her look 
simply bursting with every breath. Here was an over- 
whelming example of the rule that clothes should fit 
tightly only at your best points. Well, this gown fitted 
everywhere regardless of contours. The poor girl sang 
and sang well, and got a bit of perfunctory applause. 
Then a girl came on in a tailleur whose casual lines 
were really achieved by a triumph of careful tailoring. 
Only a practiced eye could detect that the two figures 
were about the same build. This completely poised 
young person laid her fur on the piano and without 
more ado, sang no better than the other. But when she 
had finished and nonchalantly picked up her fur and 
walked off, she got an ovation. The audience liked her 
because she was attractive. She had done a good job on 

-175- 



AM 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

herself and could give her mind to her work. She was 
utterly without self-consciousness. 

The late Amelia Earhart, speaking on behalf of avia- 
tion, usually appeared most appropriately turned out in 
such personable tweeds that she was subsequently invited 
to design sports clothes for a great New York store. Try 
as they might, her colleagues on the program could 
never hold their own against the tweedy Amelia. One 
famous beauty in particular suffered sadly by compari- 
son. She would speak in a purple velvet suit and hat 
trimmed with, of all things, ermine. And beside Miss 
Earhart's casual sophistication she looked about as smart 
as the character Beatrice Lillie is always caricaturing— 
the lady who takes herself and her clothes very seriously 
—and always has her dignity upset. When you appear 
on the platform, you're the show, or part of it. Don't 
put on a burlesque or supply the comic relief. 

In private life. Miss Lillie practices what she preaches. 
At her broadcasts she wears the trimmest of trotteur 
(street) dresses and hats and looks eminently smart, es- 
pecially against a background of Broadway fuss and 
feathers. Someone defined manners in dress as Fifth Ave- 
nue, Broadway and Park Avenue, saying that Fifth Ave- 
nue was dowagerish, Broadway spectacular, but Park 
Avenue was simple, subtle and superb. That goes for 
any type of costume, morning, noon or night. No matter 
what degree of formality is required, a dash of under- 
statement is always most effective. Simple lines register. 
Uncomplicated color schemes are the most striking. 
One or two carefully chosen accents are much more tell- 

-176- 



PLATFORM CLOTHES 

ing than a piled on, junky effect. Profusion begets con- 
fusion. People don't give it a second glance because it's 
not easy on the eyes. 

One famous woman wise in the ways of feminine 
guile always pleads she is catching a train just so she can 
appear on the platform where she is to speak in a suit. 
She is an ash blonde. And a particularly happy choice 
for an appearance on a platform with six other women 
was her chartreuse suit worn with a pieplate hat filled 
with what seemed to be pond lilies in pink and green 
and mauve. The competition hadn't a chance. But if 
you're not a suit type, don't try it. 

Clara Fargo Thomas, showing her mural paintings in 
a Fifth Avenue shop to a group of merchants dressed 
with expert strategy. Amidst a colonnade of slinky sil- 
houettes and a welter of silver fox, she wore a trim lit- 
tle black street frock with a crisp taffeta bow scarf in a 
pale yellow that threw the red gold of her hair into 
dramatic relief. Of course she stood out. And, at the 
same time, her informality deprecated her own work. It 
was a charming gesture as well as a clever one. 

Helen Cookman, showing her collections, usually 
wear'Svblack with a little white lawn turnover collar. 
Many of the French couturiers like this idea, too. And 
no wonder. It is ideal for the director of a fashion show 
because it stands out amidst the mannequins and looks 
so professional, so young, so chic and so deliberately 
part of the background. 

No, we haven't forgotten gray hair. That reminds us 
of a Hollywood fashion correspondent addressing a group 

-177- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

of stylists, the best dressed women in the country. She 
had a largish figure and beautiful gray hair which she 
piled high to give her height. (It was an evening meet- 
ing, so she wore no hat.) Her dress was a simple gray 
silk draped with chiffon. The silk kept the chiffon from 
clinging and the chiffon softened the silhouette, while 
the neutral color faded her figure into slenderness and 
brought out the beauty of her hair. She wore no orna- 
ment but a mammoth bunch of violets at her throat, 
which gave her gray eyes distinctly violet tints. She 
couldn't have done better. She was the only woman on 
the program whose dress was described by the reporters. 

Mrs. James Roosevelt, Senior, is an outstanding ex- 
ample of the art of platform dressing. Recently, at the 
Salzburg festival where she was not exactly on a plat- 
form but a guest of honor, she wore a deftly draped black 
velvet gown, superb in its seeming simplicity. And with 
it she wore no ornament but a magnificent diamond 
necklace. (We who are short on diamonds can substi- 
tute pearls.) 

Do you get the idea of these platform fashions? Un- 
derdress rather than overdress. Choose your colors, lines 
and fabrics as carefully as if you were going to sit for 
your portrait. Then forget your clothes completely. And 
the chances are, you will forget your stage fright too. 
That, of course, is what will put you over. 



178- 



tMu stUjsuxML cJ^idMjiA — 



CHAPTER FIFTEEN 



Six Women in Search of Chic 



eceptionldt: 

Decorative Lady of Big Business 

Lots of girls coming to the big city lament the fact 
that every job requires experience. That's not true. Re- 
ceptionists are taken at their face— and figure— value. 
All you need to be a receptionist is a reasonable amount 
of looks, perfect grooming, and an impressive ward- 
robe. You don't even have to know how to wear clothes 
in the way a model does. You're not selling them to peo- 
pie. A good carriage and the pleasure you take in your 
appearance will be sufficient. But you'll have to have a 
special wardrobe; not large but correct. Just what does 
big business require of a receptionist anyway? 

You are put in the reception room. You have nothing 
to do but be affable and look decorative. Big business 
spreads itself in its reception room. An expensive decor, 
shaded lamps, your desk, a huge vase of flowers, and you. 
You will find to your surprise that for doing nothing 

-179- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

you are paid in proportion. That wardrobe, then, be- 
comes a real problem. The galley slaves in the back 
offices may earn much more than you and look like the 
wrath of Heaven. But you will be hired for your looks; 
your contribution to the prosperous appearance con- 
veyed by your luxurious milieu. How to make ends 
meet? Well, let*s see . . . 

You*re the only woman in business for whom it is 
correct to dress like a lady of elegant leisure. Your key- 
note is the afternoon frock. You have found to your sor- 
row that afternoon dresses are the hardest to buy. The 
shops don't bother with them much. What they do pro- 
duce look ordered for the Social Literary Club in the 
upstate town that you're trying to forget. Why is that? 
Well, for one thing, that's because so many of them are 
in color. We've never yet found anything as effective 
for afternoon as black. So let's see what we can do with 
black as a basic tone. Notice too, that though the recep- 
tionist is a hostess and consequently supposed to wear 
afternoon clothes, she never wears lame, chiffon, or taf- 
feta in the office. Satin is different. It is going about 
quite informally these days. 

*September black crepe dress with self frill 

black crepe skirt, silk jersey topper 

October black crepe dress with black satin bodice 
add yellow tweed jacket edged with black 

* November winter coat (black) 

same dresses as October 

-180- 



H 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 
December nothing new— same dresses as November 

January nothing new— same dresses as December 

February black jacket dress printed in yellow 
added to the three you already have 

* March spring coat (black) 

the four dresses you have will go under it 
nicely 

April nothing new 

same dresses as March with spring coat or 
tweed jacket 

May use printed jacket dress 

frill dress 
add black and pink printed cape dress 
(all these are correct for the street without 
a coat) 

June use dresses worn in May 

add black linen coat dress, ecru lace (for 
warm days at the end of June) 

July use black linen coat dress 

add black shantung with pink belt and 

jacket 
add black and white printed linen with 

black jacket and bolero sash 

August same as July 



181- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

The starred months are the heavy expense months. 
After each we try to lighten your expenses, though it's 
heavy going to get started. You have to have two dresses 
at the beginning so you can send one to the cleaner's 
without having to go to bed. The winter coat is the big- 
gest expense of all, so we give you two months to re- 
cover from it. And one month to recover from the 
spring coat. Finally, study the interplay of color. See 
how the dresses all go with the coats. Notice that the 
jackets and the cape may be switched around to make 
further combinations. That takes time and thought, but 
it's just a matter of working it out. 

For accessories, you would wear a black antelope hat 
in winter, and a black suede bag, shoes and gloves. If 
you crave color, you can wear a bright scarf at the neck 
of your winter coat. In the spring you would change to 
a black baku hat. And in the summer, you might in- 
dulge in still another straw, but still black. You will 
change, in summer, to black gabardine sandals and carry 
a linen bag. You might wear chamois gloves with the 
yellow tweed jacket and natural gloves with the black 
and white linens and shantung. Which comes pretty 
close to the irreducible minimum for a whole year's 
business wardrobe— ten costumes, less than one a month. 

(These are by no means standardized wardrobes but 
they will serve to give you an idea of the kind of com- 
binations you can make.) 



-182- 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 

One Customer Who's Got to he Right 

Pity the poor salesgirl. You've got to look well to get 
the job. And you've got to get the job to look well. So 
what? So they hem you round with a lot of regulations 
to make the problem of dressing well even harder. You've 
got to be good at this dressing business. And you've got 
to wear black. You can't resort to prints as the recep* 
tionist can. You can't take refuge in suits as the secre- 
tary can. You're probably the lowest salaried woman in 
business. And it's the irony of your fate that the most is 
expected of you. You represent the store, don't you? 
You've got to be smart with a capital S. 

Well, let's get you started. You've got to wear a black 
dress. But there's no law governing the color of your 
collars and cufiEs, your scarfs and jewelry. We're going 
to let you wear suits too, since they're black silk, linen, 
and shantung so they're practically dresses. They will 
help out a good deal. 

Just to prove it can be done, we're going to ring fifty 
changes on six costumes. You will be pardoned for wear- 
ing a touch of lame at your neck because with you, it's 
anything for a change. We promise you it will be just a 
touch and most discreet. 

October through May 

Black crepe vestee dress pink satin gilet, black buttons 

turquoise silk-linen halter 

-183- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

dull gold lam^ vestee 
green taffeta Ascot scarf 
red velvet Ascot scarf 
salmon and black Rodier wool 

scarf 
black and gold striped faille 

Ascot scarf 
net gilet, glass buttons 
tucked white crepe gilet 

crepe round-necked chartreuse chiffon handker- 

dress (black) chief, jade clips 

cerise chiffon kerchief, black 
clip 

black velvet collar and cuffs, 
jade clip 

narrow edging of heavy cotton 
lace 

lingerie choir boy collar 

dubonnet chiffon handker- 
chief, pink clip 

white lingerie Pierrot collar 

black wool dress pearls, three strands 

large turquoise clip 
huge crystal clip 
two jade clips 
amber choker 

silver Indian collar necklace 
carved ivory choker 
bronze scarab pins 

-184-- 



5/X WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 




tortoise-shell necklace with 
locket 


black silk suit 


black satin blouse, jade clips 
yellow and black tie-silk 

blouse 
white crepe weskit blouse 
white satin gilet 
green crepe shirt blouse 
yellow chalk crepe blouse 
pink gilet, black buttons 


June and September 




crepe vestee dress 
(you already have) 


turquoise silk-linen halter 
net gilet, glass buttons 
lingerie gilet, black velvet rib- 
bon 


crepe round-necked 
dress (you already 
have) 


pink organdie ruffle 

Irish lace collar 

organdie clerical bib 

edging of two folds of organdie 


silk suit 

(you already have) 


turquoise silk-linen halter 
white lingerie gilet 
net gilet, glass buttons 
printed silk blouse 


July and August 




black linen suit 
(new) 


turquoise silk-linen halter 
blue lawn blouse 
natural linen gilet 
printed linen blouse 




-185- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

black shantung suit turquoise silk-linen halter 

(new) blue lawn blouse 

natural linen gilet 
printed linen blouse 

Out of six black costumes, only one every two months, 
accessories give you fifty changes— one for every week in 
the working year, counting two weeks out for a well- 
earned vacation. Follow this theory and you will be mis- 
taken for a buyer without transgressing the rules and 
your supervisor will have no kick coming, except to 
wish you'd show the other girls how you do it. 



^he ^ecreii 



aru: 
Office Maid-of -all-Work 

The secretary must be decorative, of course. But it is 
not your sole mission in life as it is with the reception- 
ist. An afternoon costume is entirely wrong for you. 
Consequently you need not have black as your keynote. 

We like to see a secretary in a suit. It looks trim, effi- 
cient, business-like. Some secretaries affect men's wear 
suits aiming to look as much like their employers as pos- 
sible. This we think good sense provided they avoid a 
mannish appearance by using colorful sweaters, blouses, 
scarfs, and clips. Incidentally a suit is the cheapest pos- 
sible way of affording many changes at slight cost since 
blouses obviously are less expensive than dresses. 

-186- 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 



Well, let 
do, buying 
at the start. 


s get you under way and see what you can 
not more than one costume a month except 


September 


printed silk jacket dress (suit effect) 
brown sharkskin suit 


October 


gray flannel suit 




brown tweed jacket (to wear with flannel 




suit skirt) 
use sharkskin suit 


November 


green tweed suit, matching topcoat with 

gray fur 
tweed coat over sharkskin suit 




tweed coat over flannel suit 


December 


gray opossum fur coat over flannel suit 

" " " sharkskin suit 




" " " tweed suit 




" " " flannel skirt and 




tweed jacket 


January 


(same as December) 


February 


(same as January) 


March 


same suits with green tweed topcoat 


April 


suits without topcoats: flannel 




sharkskin 




tweed 




flannel skirt, tweed 




jacket 




-187- 







DESIGNING WOMEN 
May (same as April) 

June sharkskin suit 

silk jacket dress 

add brown cotton tweed suit, checked 
jacket 

July cotton tweed suit 

two-piece linen dress 
printed cotton suit 

brown linen skirt to wear with checked 
cotton tweed jacket 

August (same as July) 

Ten purchases— fourteen combinations, exclusive of 
variations possible with blouses and sweaters, which can 
be practically endless. A color scheme restricted to 
brown and gray, to help out the accessory problem. This 
is just the theory of the thing— the formula upon which 
you can build your own wardrobe and impress your 
boss, who is well aware of your meager salary, with the 
fact that you're a darn good manager. 



^ke ^y^ou5emfe: 



From Judy O'Grady to the ColoneVs Lady in Quick 
Changes 

Why don't women like to look like housewives? Go 
marketing some day in a small town and you'll under- 

-188- 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 

stand. House frocks under street coats in winter, house 
frocks without benefit of coats in summer, eyelet dresses 
and sheer dresses with pink slips showing through, 
washed-out washable silks, printed chiffons in the morn- 
ing—no wonder smart women don't want to be labeled 
housewives. 

Of course there's a reason for those light colored cot- 
ton dresses under the dark coats. House dresses are made 
of cotton because it launders easily. When you're cook, 
nurse-maid, and laundress in one, you get a bit mussed 
up and washable clothes are essential. Housewives are 
the day and night laborers of the feminine world. Oh, 
don't mistake us. We know you chose this calling and 
consider the smart world well lost for love. But why not 
be picturesque about your labors; dress as a man does 
for a strenuous job or as a woman does for grueling 
sport? Why not stress your eccentricity that chose a life 
of toil— just at the beginning, of course, while your hus- 
band's getting a start— with clothes designed for toil? 
That's smart in more ways than one because smartness 
in the fashion sense means suitability. There are cos- 
tumes just as serviceable, just as washable, just as far re- 
moved from the common-place house dress, and far 
more suitable for admitting the ice man or expelling the 
book agent. 

For instance, there are those gabardine dungarees— 
pants and windbreaker— that the stores sell as sailing 
suits. Or the Levi overalls that are the dude ranch's con- 
tribution to American fashions. Needless to say they 
take to water like a duck. They'll wear like cast iron. 

-189- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

They come in dark, practical qolors. They let you leap 
over vacuum cleaner cables and junior's train with 
agility. In a pinch you can even run out into the street 
in them. (Let your conscience be your guide here.) But 
certainly you can use them for sweeping and gardening. 

For ordinary household duties: cooking, doing dishes, 
bathing the baby and presiding at his meals while he 
daubs you with gruel, why not wear a denim suit? It too 
will wear like neolithic rock, wash like the baby him- 
self, and the more it fades the more correct it is. You 
can w^ear this suit under a tweed coat and look like 
somebody even in the A & P. It's the good old idea of 
dressing down to the occasion instead of wearing a femi- 
nine thing like an eyelet dress that looks blowsy to be- 
gin with and does not improve with age. 

When you take the children out you might think 
about the vogue for dressing all of a piece with them. 
To do this you can have a flannel suit and put them in 
miniature editions of it, or you can wear a plaid skirt 
and jumper just like your daughter's. These, too, will 
go with the tweed topcoat. 

Then in your time off— when you play with your own 
friends— you can be as smart as anybody. Have one com- 
muting costume per season in a dark color, country club 
tweeds, evening clothes or at least dinner clothes, and 
housecoats for evenings at home, and you can meet the 
boss's wife morning, noon, or night and look her straight 
in the eye. 

For instance, you might have some such line-up as 
this: 

-190- 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 

Work Clothes 
September through June: 

gabardine suit (trousers) with cotton jerseys 
denim suit (skirt) with cotton blouses 

Summer: 

denim overalls 

cotton dirndl in dark print 

Outing-the-Children Clothes 
Fall and Spring: 

flannel suit, man-tailored blouses 

plaid skirt, wool jersey 
Winter: 

tweed topcoat over flannel suit and plaid skirt 

Summer: 

foulard jacket dress 

Commuting Clothes 
Winter: 
flannel suit, tweed topcoat 

Summer: 

foulard jacket dress 

Fall and Spring: 
flannel suit 

Country Club Clothes 
Fall and Spring: 

colorful tweed suit with sweaters 

Winter: 

wool dress under fur coat 

-191- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Summer: 

Liberty silk print 
printed linen jacket dress 

Housecoats 

Fall and Winter: 
velvet or moire 

Spring and Summer: 
chintz or striped chiffon 

Evening Clothes 
Fall and Winter: 

uncut velvet gown, velvet or brocade 
wrap (long) 

Spring and Summer: 

shirred chiffon, lace, or net gown 
taffeta jacket or cape 

Not counting the evening things, that's just thirteen 
items. If this seems scant compared to your neighbor's 
collection remember one good costume is worth half a 
dozen not so good. That's old-fashioned good sense. But 
it's new again and better than ever. The smartest women 
are wearing one or two costumes of a kind each season 
and wearing them until they wear out. 



192 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 

^ke C^xecutlve: 
From Glad Rags to Riches 

All women in business, and for that matter, men too, 
know they have to dress the part of successful people 
who have amassed fottunes and are merely working for 
their health. However, the problem of clothes strikes no 
one quite so hard as the woman executive. Secretaries 
can stay behind the scenes. Receptionists, like actresses, 
play to a new audience every day. But you who must 
meet the same clients over and over and impress them 
with your affluence, your taste, your knowledge of fash- 
ion etiquette are on the spot. Your boss, who can't un- 
derstand why his wife spends so much on clothes, is not 
likely to reckon with your wardrobe when paying your 
salary. Yet if you don't dress superlatively, someone else 
will get your job. 

If, as is sometimes the case, your job has some con- 
nection with fashions, then you're really up against it. 
You will have to sit at the speakers' table at fashion 
luncheons w^here you are at the mercy of reporters. 
They might sneak back to their papers in their don't- 
give-a-damn clothes and write with glee about shoe- 
makers' children. 

We hear a lot about what the French call "com- 
promise" dresses— dresses that can go to dinner formally 
or informally. But no compromise has yet been invented 
for the executive who must look businesslike in the 

-193- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

office and unbusinesslike at lunch or tea all in the same 
costume, for you never have time to change. Is it any 
wonder that the woman executive usually studies Vogue 
and Harper* s Bazaar as diligently as she does her career? 
We worked on this rudimentary wardrobe for two years, 
picking and choosing from costumes worn by outstand- 
ingly smart women. 

September black crepe dress with heavy white lace set 

in at neck and cuffs 
black crepe dress with two-toned ribbon 

outlining the neck 
fur cape (skunk or moleskin) 

October black wool dress with jade wool bodice and 
jacket 
black wool dress with black satin bodice, 
black wool jacket 

November both ensembles worn in October with fur 
cape 
black broadcloth suit with Persian 

December black cloth coat, unfurred, over wool and 
crepe dresses 

January black cloth coat with fur cape over wool 
and crepe dresses 

February same as January 

March same as December 

April same as November 

-194- 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 
May same as October 

June black taffeta suit with white lingerie blouse 

black crepe skirt with black silk topper 

(this can be printed) 
gray linen crash suit with colorful halters 

July gray and white printed linen suit, solid gray 

blouse 
black linen skirt with natural linen topper, 

piped in red 
linen crash suit with varied blouses 

August same as July 



^ke L^oileae Ljin: 
Applies Calculus to Her Wardrobe 

If you're the average college girl you're not rolling in 
wealth. And you aren't dated up every night. And you 
don't dress formally for dates. You have to apply higher 
mathematics to your allowance. You have plenty of 
beaux. But they are in college too and they have to 
study to make the grades. That's a help because you see 
them only Friday nights and week-ends. And when your 
beaux do come courting, they don't come in dinner 
jackets. Dinner jackets and tails are community property 
in most college dorms. They're booked up way in ad- 
vance for fraternity dances and things. No, the college 
boy goes calling in an oxford gray suit— if not in a very 

-195- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

odd jacket atop a turtle necked sweater— and since all his 
cronies do likewise, it's decreed that this is de rigeur— 
how men stick together! 

Well, anyway, if you have any ideas of going to col- 
lege with a wardrobe that is largely evening clothes, 
don't read this and stay home where there are "men at 
work" with a little pocket money of their own, so they 
don't have to rely on their fathers for evening duds and 
cover charges. Fathers don't hold with the idea that 
youth must be served in roadhouses and nightclubs. 

So then, what is the keynote of the college wardrobe? 
The campus clothes will have a strong country flavor. 
The date costumes will be in the five-to-seven town 
mood. Don't they dress for dinner at college? Only in- 
formally, no real dinner dresses. This is out of consider- 
ation for girls working their way through. The only for- 
mal things you'll need will be for proms, Class Day, house 
dances and college dramatics. The only real rule we 
ever heard of about dressing for dinner at college was 
"ski pants barred!" 

First Term. You arrive late in September. So this 
term means principally October, November and Decem- 
ber, though you'd better be prepared with at least one 
warm weather dress for Indian summer— a tie-silk would 
be good because you can wear your odd tweed jacket on 
and off with it during the turn of the season. But the 
backbone of your first term— in fact of all three terms 
—will be your tweed suit with matching topcoat, luxuri- 
antly furred. Then an extra skirt and the jacket we 
spoke of, with a profusion of sweaters will take care of 

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SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 

your campus needs. For dates, you'd best be provided 
with a good black crepe dress, a black satin, a black vel- 
vet skirt with a couple of cocktail blouses, and a black 
velvet dirndl. You can make your best coat do for fall, 
winter and spring, if you get a black cloth one with a 
detachable cape of, say, Persian. Now let's see how you'll 
make out. 



September gold and brown tie-silk suit with or with- 
out odd brown tweed jacket 
beige wool dress with or without jacket 
black satin dress with or without Persian 
cape 

October green tweed suit 

brown tweed jacket and beige wool skirt 
black crepe dress with Persian cape 
black satin dress with Persian cape 

November green tweed topcoat with blonde fur, over 

beige wool dress 
green tweed topcoat with blonde fur, over 

beige skirt and sweater 
black cloth coat over black crepe dress 
black cloth coat over black satin dress 

December green tweed suit under green topcoat with 

blonde fur 
brown tweed jacket and beige skirt under 

green topcoat with blonde fur 
black cloth coat and fur cape over black 

velvet skirt, white quilted satin blouse 

-197- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

black cloth coat and fur cape over black 
velvet dirndl 

Of course you'll have evening things ad lib. But re- 
member, your first evening dress should be of some 
perennial fabric like crepe in case you can't afford an- 
other as soon as you'd like. Velvet and satin and bro- 
cade are obviously limited to winter, while chiffon and 
taffeta are definitely summery. As for your wrap, the 
detachable cape trick goes as well for wraps as for dress 
coats. A black velvet full length wrap with a detachable 
white fur cape will see you through from early autumn 
till Class Day— first the cape alone, then the wrap alone, 
then both, and back again. 

Second Term, Unless you take a notion to buy more 
evening things with your Christmas money, all you 
really need is a fur coat. The fur coat should be sports- 
ish. Your furred coat will be warm enough for your 
dates, because even a college boy will shell out for taxi 
fare rather than ask you to do an East Lynne through the 
snow. So have your coat a sports fur, and get it sports 
length and swagger so it won't get sat out. Don't try to 
get a jacket that will do for an evening wrap too. A 
jacket worn day and night always shows the strain and 
soon looks regrettably dissipated. Then your second 
term line-up will be something like this: 

January green tweed suit under brown fur coat 

brown tweed jacket, beige skirt under 
brown fur coat 

-198- 



SIX WOMEN IN SEARCH OF CHIC 

black velvet dirndl under black coat with 
Persian cape 

black velvet skirt, white quilted satin blouse 
under same 

(you might add a lame blouse here for vari- 
ety) 

February like January 
March like December 

Third Term. By this time, you'll want a new date 
dress. It might be a printed taffeta. Finally for Class 
Day in the daytime, you couldn't do better than a 
chiffon with a shirred cape. So you'll wear: 

April tweeds as in November 

black satin with cloth coat 
printed taffeta with cloth coat 

May tweeds as in October 

black satin with Persian cape 
printed taffeta with Persian cape 

June tie-silk suit 

printed taffeta 
shirred chiffon 

That's all there is to it— exclusive of evening things 
and special sports outfits, all you need are twelve major 
purchases to give you nine months of fun. It's all a ques- 
tion of building your wardrobe around your major in- 
vestments, sticking to one or two color schemes, buying 
good mixers and mixing them with care. We'll admit it 
takes a college-trained mind to do that successfully. 

-199- 



^Jtit /23UW«3t£ o^^dLet^KSA 



CHAPTER SIXTEEN 



What Is This Thing Called Distinction? 

Distinction means being different and doing it with 
taste. One phase of this is creating a style of your own 
as described in Chapter 9. 

As regards distinction of merchandise per se, one way 
to achieve it is to reverse the normal order of things or 
alter it altogether. For instance, you may have your 
blouse darker than your suit instead of lighter. You 
might wear your fur on your suit jacket instead of on 
your topcoat and have your topcoat a collarless box 
jacket. You might have your suit jacket furred at the 
border instead of at the collar. Or your coat might have 
fur sleeves or a fur bodice instead of a fur collar. And 
so on. 

Or if a fashion is a Ford, it needs special treatment to 
avoid vulgarity. For example, take camel's hair coats. 
They are so prevalent that to be distinguished, they 
have to be very good indeed. Polo coats, poor relations 
of camel's hair, have made this type of coat so hack- 
neyed that the whole family has become declasse. The 
only way to achieve distinction in this group is to have 

— 200 — 



WHAT IS DISTINCTION? 

your camel's hair coat very blonde. This is an expensive 
proposition because there is generally only one blonde 
king camel in each herd. A king camel coat with bor- 
ders of spotted lynx is a beautiful thing. But a good 
tweed coat costs much less, doesn't have to go to the 
cleaner's every other day and affords a greater chance for 
originality because of the infinite variety of tweed pat- 
terns available. 

Or take prints. The woods are full of them. And most 
of them look as if they belonged in the sticks. So few of 
them are unforgettable. If you haven't an eye for a dis- 
stinctive print, there are two ways to check your judg- 
ment. Insist upon a hand-blocked print. These are al- 
ways clearly defined patterns usually with the figures 
widely spaced to give the eye a rest between motifs. Or 
try to get a print with a name. Ask who designed it. 
Many of the couturiers, like Schiaparelli and Chanel, 
design their own fabrics. Also you can always trust the 
French house of Ducharne and the English Liberty or 
our own Marguerita Mergentime. In fact any signed 
print is apt to be good, otherwise it would be presented 
anonymously. 

Sheers— what crimes are committed in that name! 
We'd like to rule them out altogether. Certainly they 
don't belong in the office any more than chiffon does. 
However, there are good sheer costumes. Only distinc- 
tion in this field comes high. 

Printed chiffons should never appear on the street. 
But, if the print is good, a printed chiffon set off with 

— 201 — 



f. 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

black velvet detail and a black baku hat makes a fine 
summer afternoon costume. 

Flannel robes are much abused garments. We should 
like to limit them to a college uniform. They belong 
over pajamas and look well at midnight feasts and fire 
drills. But for deshabille that is not called upon to ap- 
pear in public, we prefer the infinitely more feminine 
albatross robes with trapunto work. They cost little 
more. And they're so much prettier. We'd ensemble 
them with cotton Philippine embroidered gowns. 

Knitted suits we are told "can go anywhere." Per- 
sonally we wish they would go anywhere, anywhere at 
all, and never come back. Of course there are some 
designers who specialize in knitted suits and make their 
own fabrics. These suits are distinguished in the ex- 
treme, and they ought to be at the price. But they look 
much like lacy tweeds. And you can get such tweeds for 
so much less! But the home-made suits— how they ma- 
lign the human form that falls short of the divine! No 
one but a Venus can survive such a frank expose. 

If you do have a figure that is above reproach, you 
can give your knitted dress or suit distinction with 
leather buttons and belt, wooden buttons and wooden 
jewelry, or simply the pearls we mentioned in connec- 
tion with sweaters. You must do something special with 
your accessories otherwise a knitted suit looks distress- 
ingly unfinished. 

Hand knitted sweaters, of course, are lovely with the 
tailored co-operation of a jacket and skirt. But America 
goes on knitting amateurish jackets and blouses and 

— 202 — 



WHAT IS DISTINCTION? 

skirts so that in every subway one runs a perilous gaunt- 
let of knitting needles. Here is certainly a Ford fashion 
rampant. Henry Ford's old slogan fits the average 
knitted suit to perfection. "It takes you there it brings 
you back." But that's about all we can say for it. 

Patent leather grew common recently, but then it was 
introduced in colors, which gave it a new distinction. 
And somewhat the same thing happened to dotted Swiss. 
When the white dots grew commonplace the newer 
colored dots, as turquoise on a brown ground, supplied 
a fresh note. 

Embroidery, except on lingerie, is to be avoided be- 
cause it has a home-made look. When it is machine 
work, loose ends pull out and look messy. Even when it 
is handwork it is rarely chic. So don't choose this 
method of going exotic. 

Batik, tie and die work, and hand painting are also to 
be shunned. The arty always seems smarty rather than 
smart. 

As long as this chapter is degenerating into a list of 
pet peeves, we'd like to add a few about lingerie. Flesh 
and tearose underthings are practical because they don't 
yellow with laundering. (Incidentally the darker their 
lace the more exclusive they look.) But if you wear a 
thin or knitted wool dress, a pink slip is certain to show 
through. Black, in that case, is preferable, obviously. 
Again, if you wear a thin white summer frock or a thin 
lingerie blouse, the sight of a pink slip beneath com- 
pletely destroys the effect. So white lingerie has an im- 

-203- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

portant place in your wardrobe. Or, under a knitted 
string dress, you will want a neutral pongee slip. 

All this rambling shows plainly that there are no defi- 
nite rules for distinction. In each case, it means working 
out a new problem. While, in general, it is true that ex- 
pensive things are more distinguished because fewer 
people can afford them, there are plenty of cliches in 
the higher price brackets, too. At the court proceedings 
over the custody of Gloria Vanderbilt both Mrs. Van- 
derbilts and Lady Furness as well, appeared practically 
indistinguishable in moire caracul coats trimmed with 
silver fox. More recently, silver fox capes have become 
a sort of unofficial uniform for the creme de la creme. 
So take heart. Distinction is where you find it. The 
trick is to be able to recognize it. It may be found in an 
entirely new fashion or in a general fashion that has 
been given some new twist which makes it different 
from the general crush. It also means refraining from 
the weird and outre which is different all right but not 
at all smart. And it means avoiding common but in- 
excusable errors. This very avoidance of pitfalls is so 
rare that it is in itself a most enviable distinction. 



— 204 — 



PART THREE 



•XkX. Cdit <^ dUtkVi 



•xJIfUL taSt G^dUtkt/^ 



CHAPTER SEVENTEEN 



Fourteen Points for Budgeteers 

Anyone who could solve the problem of how to look 
like a million on practically nothing a year wouldn't 
have to practice what she preached; she'd be a mil- 
lionaire many times over. No one has yet come for- 
ward with so lucrative a theory. But there are many 
things one learns by sad experience— at about the age 
when clothes have lost their zest in comparison with 
creature comforts like hot water bottles. Many mothers 
have learned some of these things and insist upon going 
shopping with their daughters because "mother knows 
best." The trouble is mothers who are old-fashioned 
enough to refuse their daughters self expression gen- 
erally have taste that is equally old hat. On the other 
hand, when daughter, herself, takes over the purse 
strings, she is apt to express herself in the lop-sided 
manner of Mrs. Rinehart's immortal Bab, a sub-deb, 
who charged gaily up and down the Avenue and came 
out triumphantly with dozens of evening gowns but 
nary a nightgown to her name. 

Then there are things some women never learn. Even 

— 207 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

with unlimited resources, they manage to look like the 
net result of a rummage sale. Or they are dressed in per- 
fect taste for some other circumstances than those in 
which they find themselves, and this in spite of those 
frantic telephone calls that precede any and every 
feminine gathering— those hectic and all too trusting 
pleadings "What are you going to wear?" 

The government talks a lot about planned economy. 
Whatever you may think of the government's plans, 
you know yourself that if you don't plan at all, expenses 
sneak up on you. Of course even your best laid plans 
are bound to go astray at times. But with planned 
spending you'll have something to show for your money 
instead of a whole allowance gone glimmering on good- 
ness knows what. 

We suggest that you plan a whole year's wardrobe at 
one time. Does that scare you? Well, it shouldn't. Be- 
cause research has proved you can save about fifty per 
cent that way. When you face your year's expenditure 
all at once, your fright is a healthy symptom that will 
help to cut it down. Naturally, you can't predict what 
the fashions will be six months hence. But you can say, 
"I shall allow myself two dark town dresses for the sum- 
mer, three spectator sports dresses" and so on, and 
leave room for them in the year's outlay. Also, you 
probably intend to stick to a certain sum each month. 
In this case you'll have to borrow back and forth in the 
expensive months at the turn of the season. Here the 
trick is not only to look ahead and anticipate big ex- 
penses like your winter coat, but to keep that coat in 

-208- 



FOURTEEN POINTS FOR BUDGETEERS 

your mind's eye while you're buying fall dresses, so you 
won't have to scrap them in the winter because they 
fight with the coat of your dreams. That's what we mean 
by planned spending. 

There are two things that should influence your 
plans; the amount of money you have to spend and the 
life you lead. The money we shall leave pleasantly 
vague, speaking only of how you shall apportion it. As 
to the life you lead we shall assume merely that it is a 
modern life and right here we should remark that mod- 
ern women don't have ''Sunday clothes" or "best 
clothes" any more. We have clothes for different oc- 
casions. 

Here we give you fourteen points for a planned ward- 
robe. Follow these rules and you'll discover you can be 
as well dressed as you want to without ever going into 
debt. 

1. Never trust to love at first sight in buying a costume. 
Since we're the kind of women who find clothes ir- 
resistible, we know the wisdom of being choosy rather 
than promiscuous. When a perfectly fascinating dress 
beckons from a show window, consider it as seriously 
as if you were going to be married to it. Remember 
that love at first sight isn't always lasting. Things look 
so different when you get them home. So the old 
recipe for marriage applies very well here. // you can 
live without a man or a dress don't go for either. 

2. Never buy anything you hadn't planned to buy. This 
involves much thought as to what you need. Plan your 

- 209 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

wardrobe as carefully as a department store buyer 
selects her merchandise. Store buyers are notoriously 
hard headed. They can't afford to buy flops. Neither 
can you, for that matter. But the buyer is more aware 
of this because a mistake means her job. How does 
the store buyer get the best of high-pressuring whole- 
salers? She comes into the showroom with a list of the 
types of clothes she wants. And everything else, how- 
ever beguiling, which does not fit into her department 
needs is waved aside. 

All right then. You begin, of course, with the life 
you're going to lead. Where will the accent be? On 
business or leisure, town or country, indoors or out- 
doors, daytime or evening, home or travel? Then 
come climatic conditions. You must build up to win- 
ter and down again to summer through not just fall 
and spring but early fall and late fail, early spring 
and late spring. You really need two major daytime 
costumes for each seasonal change of temperature, ex- 
cept summer, when you need several. Your evening 
wardrobe is more flexible depending upon the extent 
of your night life. And the same holds true of active 
sports clothes. The point here is, no matter how fas- 
cinating a cruise coat may be, it's going to look aw- 
fully seasick among landlubbers. So beware of special- 
ized clothes. Buy only what you set out to buy. 

5. Buy, or plan, major purchases first and build your 
wardrobe around them. Today clever women build 
wardrobes as carefully as architects build skyscrapers. 

— 210 — 



FOURTEEN POINTS FOR BUDGETEERS 

laying a solid foundation with the major purchases, 
and then tapering off to froufrou at the top. That is, 
buy your coat, or plan it, before you buy your 
dresses. And then be sure the dresses go with the coat. 
Then buy hats to go with the dresses. Then buy shoes 
and purse together, and gloves last of all. How much 
of your year's allowance should go into your winter 
coat? That's a moot question. Most women spend 
about a fifth of their year's clothes budget on a fur- 
trimmed winter coat. Personally, we think a little less 
for a very good cloth coat without fur is wiser. Then 
you can put the money you've saved into a fur scarf 
and wear it with both coat and suits and dresses. This 
goes particularly for spring coats. Fur on a spring 
coat limits its season unduly, cramps its style willfully, 
and generally makes it look cheap since unfurred 
spring coats are considered smarter. Perhaps this is 
because spring furs are so perishable they soon be- 
come worn. 

What about a fur coat? Well, what about it? Unless 
you need it for actual warmth, we consider it a poor 
investment. If you do need it for warmth, that's all 
right— a sports coat is not prohibitive. But a dress fur 
coat means something like moire caracul or mink, 
both out of sight for most of us. The money at the 
average woman's disposal is better invested in a smart 
cloth coat than in a mediocre fur one. The badge of 
execrable taste is a fur coat whose wardrobe com- 
panions cannot live up to it. Incidentally what you 
save by not buying a fur coat might better be spent 

-811- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

on a fur cape. Chosen carefully it can go over your 
dresses spring and fall, over your spring coat, and 
even over evening dresses. 

Suits are your next major expense. They cost more 
than dresses. But they're really an economy because 
one suit can look like several costumes with different 
blouses, scarfs, furs, boutonnieres and gloves. Also 
suit styles do not change as fast as dress styles so a 
suit may survive several more seasons than a dress. 
Again we advise no fur. The season for a fur-trimmed 
suit is just about the durance of November, a short 
month at that, unless the suit has a long coat and you 
plan to wear it all winter. This can be done even as 
far north as New York. Also the designers feeling 
sorry for the short life of the average fur-trimmed 
suit, have contrived a way to prolong that life through 
the winter by adding little neckless, matching box 
jackets that supply additional warmth while leaving 
the fur at the neck in all its glory. This costs about 
as much as the average fur-trimmed coat and gives 
you two different weights to cover late fall, winter 
and early spring. 

Then there is that good old standby, the tweed suit 
with matching topcoat. The topcoat of course may be 
furred. Keep this topcoat in mind when buying wool 
dresses so they will go under it without screaming 
"incompatibility" and you'll have quite a repertoire 
of costumes, again covering late fall, winter and early 
spring, while the dresses alone or with tweed jackets 
will take care of early fall and late spring. 

— 212 — 



^v 



FOURTEEN POINTS FOR BUDGETEERS 

Well, you get the general idea of building your 
wardrobe around your major purchases. Buy or plan 
the big things first but save plenty for the dresses be- 
cause dresses are harder to buy. 

4. Buy things that can be used more than one season. 
Buy early fall back-to-town dresses that can be worn 
later under a coat. Buy suits that can be worn spring 
and fall, such as tweed and flannel. Buy topcoats that 
can be worn with both suits and dresses. Such coats 
should be swagger or box. Buy felt hats in spring 
that can be worn well into the summer. Buy small 
furs that can be used fall, winter and spring year 
after year. (Fur coats have to be altered from season 
to season.) Buy ensembles of silk dresses with tweed 
jackets, that can be used at the turn of the season, 
with or without the jacket at the whim of the 
weather. Buy crepe evening dresses that can be worn 
both winter and summer. 

You can't always do this. But apply this test to any 
contemplated purchase. And if it stands up under it, 
you know it's a good buy. However if it passes the 
other thirteen points we mention, it may still be well 
worth buying. 

5. Never buy anything however charming if you are well 
stocked with that type of thing. If you have two cos- 
tumes in one category, put temptation behind you 
unless it's a summer outfit, in which case, as we have 
said, you need more changes. Even with summer 

-213- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

dresses, two of one fabric are enough. Do this unless 
you can arrange with your conscience to give one of 
your similar costumes away. Or your wardrobe will 
get overbalanced in that direction, and you'll look mo- 
notonous. The exception to this of course is the mat- 
ter of evening dresses, if you are a debutante or Elsa 
Maxwell. But for the average mortal, this is a pretty 
trustworthy rule. 

6. Buy things that are interchangeable to make several 
costumes. The unfurred winter coat becomes one cos- 
tume with a fur scarf, a second without it, a third 
with a fur cape. A black silk suit is one costume with 
a lingerie blouse. The skirt alone with a satin or lame 
cocktail blouse is quite another. The vestee dress with 
a tailored weskit effect is most businesslike, with a soft 
chiffon guimpe it is something else again. The plain 
black wool dress can go week-ending with a colored 
tweed jacket, and, doffing the jacket, can appear at 
cocktail time with pearls looking like no relation to 
its former self. Never buy a costume unless you are 
satisfied it can develop a dual, if not a triple, per- 
sonality. 

7. Stick to one basic daytime color scheme per season— a 
dark or neutral color. Make your major purchases in 
this color, your coat, suit and dresses, also shoes and 
bag. Ring color changes with blouses, hat trimming, 

(not the whole hat) jewelry, gloves, scarfs, etc. Never 
buy a costume that launches you into a whole new 

-214- 



w 



FOURTEEN POINTS FOR BUDGETEERS 

and unpremeditated color scheme. What with ac- 
cessories and all, it will blow your allowance higher 
than a kite before you can appear in it. And if it 
won't pair off with anything else in your wardrobe, 
you will get terribly tired of wearing it in solitary 
state without ringing changes on it. Shun any dress 
that will walk by its lone in your wardrobe, 

8. Avoid imitations— stick to poor but honest purchases. 
An honest-to-goodness sheepskin coat is smarter than 
a Japanese mink. Good semi-precious jewelry is in- 
finitely better than fake diamonds or rubies. Never 
compromise with quality. Dressing down is far 
smarter than trying to dress above your budget. There 
are exceptions, of course, which we shall mention in 
our chapter on quality. Lace is one of them. But as a 
rule avoid imitations. Choose frankly less luxurious 
materials of quality. Otherwise you'll look like a poor 
relation. This way you'll look like a person of taste. 

p. Buy comparatively expensive accessories. A three dol- 
lar belt will do a lot for a ten dollar dress. Cheap 
dresses always have cheap belts, generally self-belts 
with reprehensible rhinestone buckles. Substitute a 
leather belt with the imagination that goes into a 
Paris import and you have something. Exchanging 
a ten dollar clip for the tinny rhinestone one that 
comes at the neck of your ten dollar model will en- 
hance its value by about thirty dollars. A ten dollar 
satin blouse and matching four dollar doeskin gloves 

-215- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

will make your little fifteen dollar flannel suit look as 
if it had come into money. Absurd? Preposterous? 
Out of proportion? You have forgotten one impor- 
tant consideration. You can use those stage props over 
and over and over. Like your furs, they're part of 
your working capital, paying dividends year after 
year. 

10, Try things together before buying them. The stores 
respect women who want to try the effect. They are 
only too glad to let you wear a costume you're trying 
on, into the millinery department to select a hat for 
it. They'd rather take the trouble than have you ex- 
change the hat later. Or if it's a dress that's already 
in your closet that you want to suit with a hat or a 
collar or whatnot, wear it into the store. Don't trust 
to your memory for color or line. The store will take 
your clothes just as seriously as you do. Obliging mil- 
liners will put touches of two colors on a black hat so 
you can wear it with a black skirt and two different 
jackets. They'll shop for ribbons or feathers that 
match exactly if you give them samples. Be a perfec- 
tionist. That's the secret of the great designers. Take 
a little trouble. When a designer does, she charges for 
it. Well, you can take pains just as well as she can. 
Insist on ensembling everything and you will look 
turned out by a custom department in made-to-order 
clothes. Save your pennies. Take the trouble yourself. 

11. Have a price in mind before you go shopping. De- 

— 216 — 



FOURTEEN POINTS FOR BUDGETEERS 

velop a kind of conscience about what you think you 
should pay for a silk dress, a wool dress, an evening 
dress, a coat, a suit, etc. You may develop this by the 
trial-and-error methods. You may get it by reading 
advertisements or by comparing notes with your 
friends. You may arrive at your price by ascertaining 
the lowest figure at which you can get copies of 
French models or originals by American designers. 
Even here we won't go into actual prices because they 
vary so in different cities. Also, larger sizes have to pay 
more. Debutante departments of shops are notably 
inexpensive. 

Now this matter of price being settled between you 
and your conscience, you don't have to stick to it like 
Brer Rabbit to the tar baby. If you can see possi- 
bilities of a dual life in a certain costume, you may 
feel justified in extending yourself a bit. If you see a 
bargain that is a bargain (not an imitation, or a badly 
cut dress, or a Ford that you've seen on half the backs 
in town, or an impractical costume; a color that soils 
easily, a fluting that will be the dickens to keep in 
press, or a knitted fabric that will stretch) then go to 
it; save a little money against the next time you go 
over your quota. 

12. Beware of high styles. High styles are the trade name 
for whatever is the height of fashion. And in clothes 
as in everything else, the higher they fly, the faster 
and harder they fall. 

On the other hand, there are the classics. What are 

-217- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

the classics? And why are they classic? They're the 
things we never grow tired of. They're presented in 
new editions every season. But basically they're the 
same; the black dresses that are the backbone of the 
Frenchwoman's wardrobe, the tweed suit, the tailleur, 
the cape frock in the spring, the sports shirtmaker 
frock, the black compromise evening gown to wear 
when you're not sure that your escort is dressing. The 
classics are the things we can't get on without. And 
you can wear your classics year after year. They are 
conservative but none the less attractive for that. 
True, the high fashions are more spectacular in line. 
But you can make up for this by relieving your classic 
simplicity with strokes of spectacular color in care- 
fully chosen accessories. 

jj. Remember that colors, except for sports and eve- 
ning, are for the rich. There are three good reasons 
for this. Colors are more perishable than neutral tones. 
They involve more changes of accessories. They can 
not be worn as often as neutrals because everybody 
remembers a colorful ensemble. And you, yourself, 
get tired of it more quickly than of a neutral color on 
which you can make changes. Anyway you look at it, 
colors mean an extensive wardrobe— and expensive too 
—for subtle, pleasing colors come high. 

7^. Watch out for Fords. What is a Ford? In the ready- 
to-wear trade, it is a success. It is so successful that you 
see it on old and young, fat and thin, and eventually 

-218- 



FOURTEEN POINTS FOR BUDGETEERS 

on nine out of ten shoppers who frequent the bargain 
basements. 

Now a Ford is not a classic for it soon runs its 
course. Classics stay popular, because they're so plain 
you can always give yours an individual touch. No, 
Fords are things like the late Empress Eugenie hat or 
Joan Crawford's Letty Lynton dress. 

One way to avoid Fords is to stick to plain things. 
A Ford is almost always fancy and that's not good 
taste anyway. And of course Fords are cheap. Plain 
things are more expensive because froufrou can cover 
a multitude of manufacturers' sins. But the plain 
classics are worth more money since they can be 
varied and since the masses don't go for them. 

Another way to avoid Fords is to shop late and 
avoid the rush. If you have enough classics to carry 
you well into the season you can watch and see what 
ideas are copied down to the Ford price level. This 
mid-season shopping will freshen your wardrobe and 
level out the strain on your budget, too. So take your 
time and avoid mistakes. In short, be cagy. Watch the 
Fords go by. 

So before making a purchase, see how it stacks up 
against this questionnaire: 

1. Can I live without it? 

2. Had I planned to buy something like this? 

3. Am I buying it at the right time? Should I buy 
a major purchase first? Will it go with the major 
purchases that I'm planning? 

-219- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

4. Will it serve for more than one season? 

5. Have I enough things of this kind? 

6. Can I give it a dual or multiple personality? 

7. Does it fit into my season's color scheme? 

8. Is it an obvious imitation? 

9. If an accessory, will it raise the tone of my cos- 
tume? 

10. Does it go well with other things in my wardrobe 
by actual test? 

11. Is the price within my budget? 

12. Is it a high style riding for a fall? 

13. Is it too colorful to be worn often? 

14. Is it a Ford? Or likely to become a Ford? 



— 220 — 



"Xkx c©^ ^ dU$Ui/^ 



CHAPTER EIGHTEEN 



Big Changes for Small Change 

We hear a lot about changing a costume completely 
with well-chosen accessories. But the details are gen- 
erally left to our own discretion. Experience is the best 
teacher but her lessons come high. Hindsight is better 
than foresight. In looking back over our own mistakes 
we have come to the conclusion that three simple rules 
borne in mind while shopping will make your changes 
easier and less expensive. 

1. The more separate pieces a costume has, the more 
it can he interchanged with others. We have spoken of 
the separate fur scarfs and capes that can be used with 
dresses, coats and suits, also of the three-piece tweed 
suits that can be mixed with odd jackets and skirts. We 
like the skirt and topper vogue, too, for the same rea- 
son. The shops are doing constructive things these days 
with night and day ensembles consisting of one dark 
silk skirt with a matching tailored topper for day and a 
contrasting lame one for evening. 

2. Neutral colors blend with several sets of accessories 
in various colors. Black goes with almost any color you 

— 221 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

can name. Wherefore the black evening dress which we 
have said was somber. It is when unrelieved but not 
when accented. The same thing is true of the perennial 
white evening dress and of gray and brown and navy 
street costumes and to some extent of dark green and 
even wine. 

3. Separate color accents are less limiting than those 
that don't come off. You may be intrigued by a black 
dress with a turquoise bodice. But it will stay black and 
turquoise till your maid inherits it. While a plain black 
dress may have various colorful adventures thanks to 
jewelry, jackets, chiffon scarfs tucked into the neck, 
vestees, or belts. A black and turquoise hat is limited to 
this one dress while a black hat with detachable colored 
bands might go with several costumes: the black dress, 
a green suit with black fur, a beige suit with a black 
blouse and so on. Ensembles in which the coat (or fur 
coat) lining matches the dress are prohibitively limited, 
for the coat cannot be worn satisfactorily with any other 
dress. 

And now we give you some sample metamorphoses 
that may be made from day to day or from season to 
season. 



etamorpko6e5 



Black Crepe or Velvet Evening Gown 

1. Juliet cap with brilliants 

rhinestone cHp at back of decolletage 

— 222 — 



BIG CHANGES FOR SMALL CHANGE 

rhinestone bracelets 
rhinestone belt buckle 

2. green sequin bolero 
green feather calot 

3. roman gold collar 
heavy gold bracelets 

gold classic bandeau in hair 

4. lei o£ green and white flowers outlining decolletage 
long jade earrings 

5. A white chiffon scarf at least three yards long se- 

cured with amethyst clips at the base of the 
decolletage in front and back. That is, the center 
of the scarf will come in front. The ends will be 
tossed over the shoulders, caught together at the 
back and then permitted to trail to the hem-line. 

Gr.\y Tailleur 

1. gray hat 

dusty pink blouse 
dusty pink suede gloves 
gray shoes and bag 

2. gray felt hat 
periwinkle blouse 
sable scarf 

3. brown felt sailor 
brown linen blouse 

-223- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

brown shoes 

gray bag and gloves 

4. dubonnet hat 
dubonnet blouse 
gray gloves 
dubonnet bag and shoes 

5. black hat 
black silk blouse 
silver fox scarf 

White Evening Dress 

1. gold kid palm leaves in hair 
gold kid girdle 

gold kid slippers and bag 

2. ciel blue ostrich cape 
rhinestone tiara 
rhinestone bracelets and bag 

3. red velvet bolero 

red and white velvet bow in hair 
white kid gloves 
red slippers 

4. silver paillette jacket 
silver paillette page boy cap 
white gardenias on wrists 

one white gardenia atop the cap 

5. scarf as described for black evening gown, of red 

chiffon secured with gold clips 

— 224 — 



BIG CHANGES FOR SMALL CHANGE 

red slippers 

wrist length white lace mitts 



Black Velvet Afternoon Dress 

1 . black velvet cap with ermine tails 
ermine muff 

2. white starched lace ruff 

3. chartreuse handkerchief tucked in neck-line 
jade clips 

jade bracelet 

4. gardenias outlining the neck 

5. wrought silver collar-necklace and bracelets 

Brown Wool Suit 

1 . gold sweater 

brown hat with gold pheasant quill 

2. brown and turquoise tie-silk blouse 
brown felt sailor 

3. cream colored crepe blouse 
brown hat 

sable scarf 

brown bag, gloves, shoes 

4. brown hat, scarlet quill 
scarlet jersey blouse 
Y€d and brown Ascot 

- 225 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

5. brown hat 

gray satin blouse 
sables 

Now please don't take all this literally. Don't attempt 
to make exactly these combinations. Imagine our pre- 
dicament were reader to meet reader each wearing iden- 
tical duplicates of these costumes. These ideas are 
merely guideposts or signals to switch your train of 
thought along various tracks. Once you're thinking 
along these lines trot out your wardrobe and see what 
you can do. Also, bearing this sort of thing in mind 
will help you to think before you buy and to visualize 
possible metamorphoses. That should make you gravi- 
tate naturally toward those excellent classics which are 
not merely good fashion but equally good economy. 



— 226 — 



"XkX. C^^ H, Cfidt(U/5 



CHAPTER NINETEEN 

How to Get Tour Moneys Worth 

Most shops, as you probably know, retain comparison 
shoppers to shop competing stores and see that their 
own merchandise compares favorably with that of their 
rivals. If every woman could spend a few months at this 
job, shopping would become a far less hit-and-miss busi- 
ness than it is at present. So we'll tell you a bit about 
what a professional shopper is required to know. 

Merchandise is judged on three points— quality, work- 
manship and style. 



io^uaut 



i 



The first rule of quality is that merchandise must be 
real and not imitation. Of course, you can rely on any 
reputable store to be honest and tell you what is what. 
If a fabric is advertised by such a store as linen, or if 
the store's clerk says it is linen, you may take the store's 
word for it, thanks to the Better Business Bureau. How- 
ever, you ought to know how to detect imitations and 

— 227 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

how to distinguish between bona fide fabrics or leathers 
that are confusingly similar in appearance. You ought 
to know what you're getting in order to know not only 
what to pay for it but also what to expect of it. Then, 
if you pass on this information to a good laundry or a 
good cleaner they will know how best to handle your 
garments. So we shall discuss various materials briefly 
and then give you tests for recognizing them. 



^am 



Silk may be p ure or weig hted. Weighted silk means 
^siTFlitera llyweig h ted down ^kjTcertaiE^mlriemrsalts 
which are found in many dyes. Pure silk or pure dye 
silk (the terms are interchangeable) is preferable to 
weighted silk because the weighting makes the fabric 
deteriorate. Actually pure dye silks, so called, are not 
quite pure because silk is so soft it has to have some 
weighting or it would be too flimsy to work with. But 
the legal definition of pure dye silk limits the weight- 
ing to a negligible percentage. 

The silk fabrics are too numerous to mention. But 
take care not to confuse the following: velvet and 
velveteen. Velveteen, of cou rse, is entirely co tton. 
Velvet is generally a combination of cotton and^ ilk. 
All-silk velvet is expensive. And transparent velvet is 
made with a silk back and a rayon pile. Satin and 
sateen . Satin is silk or rayon. Sateen is cottonTc hi ff on 
and mousseline. Chiffon is silk or rayon . Mousseline 

228- 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

is cotton. Aside from these fabrics, the confusion is al- 
most always between silk and rayon. Though the wild 
silks like Tussah and shantung and pongee, having 
an uneven thread, could conceivably be confused with 
linen. 
Rayon is a fabric made from cellulose by machine. 
Nowadays rayon is so versatile it can duplicate the 
finish of almost any fabric— silk, linen, cotton or wool 
—and also achieve beautiful chalky finishes and lovely 
color effects that cannot be made in silk. For this 
reason and because it handles so well, the couturiers 
are using it extensively. 

Because rayon is essentially a firm fabric, it needs 
no weighting at all, which means it wears better than 
silk. And as silk is the strongest of the natural fabrics, 
ray on is obviously the best wearing fabr ic in exist- 
ence . Also, unlike silk, white rayon does not turn 
yellow. That makes it desirable for sports dresses and 
lingerie. Linen-finished rayons do not wrinkle as 
easily as real linen. On the other hand, wool-finished 
rayons are not as warm as real wool. 

The three types of rayon used today are viscoses, 
acetates and cuprammoniums. Among the viscoses are 
such well known brands as Crown rayon, Dupont 
rayon and Enka rayon. Among the acetates are Ser- 
aceta, Acele and Celanese. The cuprammoniums are 
mostly Bembergs. Viscoses are usually used for prints, 
satins and crepes; acetates for taffetas and failles; cup- 
rammoniums for sheers. Combinations of viscoses and 

-229- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

acetates are used for crepes, satins, novelty crepes and 
novelty textures generally. 

Linen: The commonest types of linen are sheer hand- 
kerchief linen for handkerchiefs and blouses, fine 
Irish linen for summer dresses, strong peasant linen 
for sports clothes, and rough textured linen crash for 
suits and coats. Always make sure linens are washable, 
fast colors, and pre-shrunk. You will have to rely on 
the shop for this information. 

Cotton may be natural or mercerized. Mercerized cot- 
ton has a shiny finish desirable in such fabrics as 
poplin. Lisle is a fine grade of cotton. It is usually 
knitted rather than woven— into jerseys, sweaters, 
and socks. Again, always check on the washability, 
shrinkage, and fast color. 

Wool includes tweeds, hard-surfaced fabrics like broad- 
cloth or serge, flannels and hairy fabrics like camel's 
hair, cashmere and angora. 

The best tweeds are hand woven in Scotland and 
have a loose, freehand look and beautiful, soft colors 
due to home-made vegetable dyes. Harr is tweeds are 
always recognizable by their smoky smell, a souvenir 
of the peat fires over which the wool is dried. It clings 
to them for life. And damp weather brings it out 
strongly. However, this does not insure a hand made 
Harris tweed, as many of them nowadays are made by 
machine. 

Hard-surfaced wools are judged by the fineness of 
their weaves. 

-230- 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

Flannels are judged by their softness and supple- 
ness. 

Camel's hair cannot be one hundred per cent 
camel's hair for it would fall apart. But the less it is 
adulterated the better. You can gauge this by the 
softness. Cashmere should be extremely soft. And 
angora should be both soft and silky. 

Many English sweaters are made from * Virgi n 
wool" which is the softest wool of its type because it 
is the lamb's first bob. 
Fabric Test: The burning tests given below will 
sound pretty fantastic for the average shopper. Wom- 
en possessed of such zeal for getting their money's 
worth might easily set the town on fire. You can't go 
around defying the fire laws in department stores. But 
when the merchandise is delivered to your home, you 
can ravel one small thread from the seam of a dress or 
the hem of a necktie and do a little experimenting 
then and there. If your test belies the store's claim, 
you are perfectly justified in returning the purchase 
if you have not damaged it. 

These tests are far from conclusive. Because often 
many different fibers may be combined in one thread. 
But if the thread reacts at all suspiciously— if a sup- 
posedly all-wool thread burns readily— you know it 
contains some cotton. Also, often the warp may be 
one thing and the weft another. So you will have to 
- test both to get a line on the fabric. However, here 
are the amateur tests— the best you can do outside of a 
laboratory. After reading them you will probably de- 

— 281 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

cide that it's easier to look for the manufacturer's 
identification tag and, failing that, to ask the store 
just what the merchandise is. You see how important 
it is to stick to nationally known brands and reputa- 
ble retailers. 

Silk— Pure Dye: burns slowly. When the flame is ex- 
tinguished, a small, brittle ball is left on the end. 
This ball is easily crushed with the fingers. 

Silk— Weighted: the burnt fibers will glow and retain 
their shape. The metallic weighting remains. 

Rayon— CuPRAMMONiuM or Viscose Types: burn very 
rapidly almost in a flash, leaving no ash. 

Rayon— Acetate Type: burns slowly with sparkling 
effect, leaving a ball on the end similar in appearance 
to the ball on the silk fiber, but hard like glass. 

Linen: when wet, absorbs moisture thirstily unlike cot- 
ton which resists water. 

Cotton: burns rather rapidly with a pin-point glow 
on the end, leaving virtually no ash. 

Wool: does not burn readily but bubbles and glows as 
it burns. The characteristic animal odor is ample 
identification. 

General Test for Weaves: Scratch the fabric with 
your nail. If you can push the threads together leav- 
ing a scar, the weave is unsatisfactory. It will pull at 
the seams and become sleazy. 

General Test for Warmth: Hold the fabric to the 
light. If the light comes through, so will the wind. Of 
course the wool test is proper here, too. For wool is 
the warmest fabric. 

-232- 



mmmm 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 



Special 



uunefi 



¥ 



^aa 



nc6 



Felt: The best felt is fur-felt, made of the hairs from 
furs pressed together. Cotton felt is inferior. Fur felts 
are sleeker and more supple than cotton felts. (You 
can almost see the hairs in them.) 

Straws: In smooth straws the finer weaves are best. In 
rough straws regularity is the criterion. 



^iik S^tock 



Lna6 



There is more misinformation given out about 
hosiery than about almost any other commodity that 
women buy. Forget the complicated discussions of 
twists, gauges, and silk turns that you see in the hosiery 
advertisements and follow the simple rules given below 
for buying silk stockings and you'll get satisfactory wear 
from them. 

One-thread hose is the sheerest and is a wanton ex- 
travagance for most women. Two-thread is the favorite 
for evening wear with open sandals. Three-thread stock- 
ings are a sheer service weight for not too hard wear. 
Four-thread stockings are the business woman's favorite 
and should give plenty of wear. Five to seven thread 
are for heavy duty wear (tending a litter of dogs, per- 
haps) and although stockings are made in eleven-thread 
weights too, we don't advocate their use. 

Lisle feet or reinforced silk feet add to the wearing 

-233- 



MB 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

qualities of the hose, as do reinforced heels, toes, tops. 
A run-stop feature at the top is important. Other points 
which influence quality are adequate stretch, and free- 
dom from rings. 

Rules to follow when buying stockings: 

1 . Find the brand or quality from which you get the 
best results and stick to that brand always. 

2. Never buy a stocking too sheer for your purpose. 

3. Always buy two or more pairs of the same color. 
In case of casualties the survivors may be paired. 

4. Be sure that you are buying your correct size and 
length. 

5. Always buy full-fashioned hosiery. Seamless ho- 
siery, while cheaper, doesn't have the wearing 
qualities or the fit of the full-fashioned. 



oLeainerd 



Imitation leathers are sometimes cleverly made. In 
suedes, imitations feel like cloth. In smooth leathers, 
imitations have a papery feel. In rough leathers, imita- 
tions have a suspiciously regular, machine-made grain. 
The real thing has the look of skin with faint signs of 
cell and vein structure. 

Suedes: Sueding is a method of finishing leather to give 
it a dull surface. Thus we have antelope, calf, mocha, 
etc., in sueded leathers. Many of these are generic 

- 234 - 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

terms and one can not differentiate between them 
too closely. The best suedes are degrained on_the out- 
side— the smoother side— from which the hair has been 



removed . This results in a finer texture. Avoid buy- 
ing suedes that are extremely rough on the inside. 
They are made of so-called ''splits" or inferior skins, 
are not pliable, and wear poorly. 

Antelope Suede: Antelope is the arijtocraLolJJiis^xmp 
i f we except the^ ostlyjxijideer. It is soft, pliable, and 
has a fine, silky nap with a rich luster— the sleeker 
and silkier, the better the quality. Never use a wire 
brush on antelope. This ruins the texture. An ordi- 
nary sponge brushed over the antelope is the best 
cleaner. (Of course the sponge shouldn't be wet!) 
Antelope, however, particularly the black antelope, 
does not hold its dye and the color will rub off during 
the entire life of the skin. If you are willing to over- 
look this, antelope is the most luxurious of leathers. 
It is used a great deal for millinery, gloves, and bags. 

Doeskin Suede: Doeskin looks and feels so much like 
antelope that experts say nobody can tell the differ- 
ence between doeskin and antelope of equivalent 
quality. Antelope's quality range is higher, however. 
Doeskin gloves of course are quite different in that 
they are washable. English and French doeskins usu- 
ally are considered the best. 

Calfskin Suede: Calf skin is heavier than antelope and 
doeskin and has a less silky sheen. The finer the nap 
and the higher the luster the better. Calfskin is used 
for jackets and shoes ; things for which antelope and 

-235- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

doeskin would be too delicate. Avoid roughness in 
skins here, too. 

Reversed Calf: This is calf sueded on the inner side, 
not the hair side. It has a coarser nap than calf sueded 
in the usual manner. The shoe leather of this type 
wears well but has a tendency to shine badly. Constant 
brushing will delay this. 

KiDSKiN Suede: This is a fine soft leather that wears 
well but usually is not washable. Its suppleness makes 
it especially suitable for gloves. 

Mocha Suede: A fine, slightly heavier leather which 
usually is washable. New developments in tanning 
have made this leather more popular recently. It is 
derived from Arabian sheep. The best variety is 
known as "Blackhead." 

KiDSKiN is considered the _ finest o f smooth leathers. It 
has a fine grain and a beautiful luster which makes it 
adaptable for dress shoes and gloves. 

Calf has a firmer texture than kidskin. Thus it makes 
a more serviceable shoe. 

Capeskin is another important leather of this group. 
The name is derived from its chief source, Capetown, 
South Africa. It can be bought in fine, thin gloves as 
well as heavier weights. It is not used for shoes. 

Pigskin is easily identified by the characteristic bristle 
holes. In addition, it is often scarred. The fewer the 
scars the more expensive the skin although scars are 
no reflection upon the quality of the skin. Pigskin 
will take all sorts of wear. 

Alligator is a hard leather so shoes made of it are not 

-236- 



HiiCiP 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

for people with sensitive feet. It is apt to crack be- 
tween the scales but this is avoided in good shoes by 
cutting the leather so that the greatest strain will not 
fall along weaker parts of the skin lines. Well-matched 
grains usually indicate good quality. 

Reptiles: Snakeskin and lizard imitations are easily de- 
tected because in the real thing, the scales stick up 
and give a rough, scratchy texture. In imitations, the 
leather is smooth with the pattern stamped on. Again 
well-matched markings are important. 

Pin Seal wears excellently and is expensive. It is easy 
to imitate, however, because of the regularity of the 
grain. It is used chiefly for bags, bill folds, and small 
leather goods. 



-2 



U/'J 



Furs are by far the trickiest of all merchandise. Even 
if you're a connoisseur you owe it to yourself to buy 
the protection of a reputable house. However, we shall 
attempt to tell you how to know quality in furs to some 
degree. At least these remarks will show you what to 
expect and perhaps put you on your guard against some 
of the tricks of the trade. 

Wool imitations of fur exist that sometimes deceive 
the extremely undiscriminating. Fur, of course, grows 
naturally out of a pelt while wool imitations are nothing 
but cloth. Watch for such imitations of Persian and 
caracul. Cloth imitations also are made of leopard and 

-237- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

baronduki with the spots and stripes printed on. And 
plush imitates the rabbit family. But such imitations 
would rarely deceive even a child. 

Amongst real furs, there are separate standards of 
quality for each individual breed but a few general 
rules hold good for all: 

1. Old skins are inferior because with age the natu- 
ral oils dry out and the pelts crack. Cold storage 
in summer retards this aging process. 
^ 2. Luxuriance or thickness of hair is desirable. 

3. The finer the texture in any given breed, the 
better the quality. 

4. Natural luster is desirable. This should not be 
confused with synthetic luster achieved by dyes. 

5. Brown dyed furs usually are inferior to natural 
-<-- brown furs because with age the dye tends to 

turn red. Alaska seal is an exception to this 
rule because it is dyed by a special process. 

6. Dyed long-haired furs are inferior to natural 
long-haired furs because the dye makes the long 
hairs brittle (like dyed human hair) so that such 
furs don't wear well. Also dyes make long-haired 
furs coarse and stiffen the pelts so they are more 
likely to crack. 

7. The paws of an animal are inferior to the rest 
of the pelt. So a coat of chinchilla paws is tech- 
nically chinchilla, but an inferior grade. 

8. Beware of skins that are heavy for their breed. 
-2^8- 



^ 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

They probably are pieced skins. Do not confuse 
heaviness with thickness of the fur itself. 
9. In fur garments, the better the skins are matched, 
the better the quality. This means matching col- 
oring, thickness of fur, length of fur, markings (as 
in mink or leopard), curl (as in Persian lamb), 
or pattern (as in broadtail), so that the coat or 
cape or collar looks all of a piece. 

10. Collars of perishable furs should be set back 
from the neck to protect the fur from wear. 
While this is not a matter of intrinsic quality, it 
is a practical consideration. 

Individual pelts of a given breed, vary as much as in- 
dividual heads of hair; some are coarse, some fine, some 
luxuriant, some sparse, some lustrous, some dull. As 
every dog fancier knows, climate and diet and ancestry 
affect the quality of fur. Cold climates make for lux- 
uriance so climate is the reason why the best sables come 
from Russia, the best seals from Alaska. Diet makes for 
luster and ancestry makes for certain desired colorings. 
So diet and ancestry are the reasons why some of the 
best foxes come from pedigreed fox farms. Mink now is 
being bred in the same way. Following is a list of the 
better known furs with the salient characteristics of 
each: 

Real Chinchilla is the most valuable fur in the world 
and probably the most perishable. Its lovely mauve 

-239- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

cast defies imitation. Imitation chinchilla is the most 
unsuccessful imitation in the fur world. It is usually 
dyed coney (rabbit) . Its spurious color and compara- 
tively coarse texture always will give it away. 

Winter Ermine: The best winter ermine comes from 
Russia and is white with black spotted tails. Ermine 
has a tendency to turn yellow with age, and old skins 
are often chalked to make them look white. The 
average life of an ermine skin of good quality is 
seven years. 

Summer Ermine is pale honey color and ranks below 
winter ermine in value though it is the same animal, 
but trapped in summer, when the versatile ermine 
wears a different coat. 

Natural Mink: The best mink is natural. The best 
natural mink is dark. The finest natural mink comes 
from Labrador, the lake region of New York state, 
and eastern Canada. 

Blended Mink is touched up with dye to make it look 
darker. The dye is applied only to the hair, not the 
pelt, and is blended out to preserve the natural mark- 
ings of the skin. Under rule five, blended mink is in- 
ferior to natural mink but a blended mink coat of 
fine quality, sold as such, is in entirely good standing. 
It should be less expensive than natural mink, how- 
ever. 

Jap Mink is a breed of mink found in Japan. In its 
natural state it is canary yellow. It is dyed to imitate 
its brunette cousin. From the standpoint of taste, it 
is a poor imitation. 

— 240 — 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

Russian Sable: The best sable comes from Russia. It is 
a grayish brown sprinkled with tiny white hairs. It 
is the smallest and finest-haired member of its family. 

Hudson Bay Sable is a bigger animal than its Russian 
cousin with longer and slightly coarser hair. It ranks 
next to Russian sable. 

Baum Marten is generally dyed to look like sable. It 
is larger than Hudson Bay sable and its hair is longer 
and coarser. It ranks one degree lower in the sable 
group. Natural baum marten is light brown with a 
bright yellow belly. 

Stone Marten also is dyed to look like sable. It is even 
larger and longer and coarser-haired than baum mar- 
ten. So it ranks just after it. The natural stone marten 
is light cocoa brown. 

Kolinsky is an animal named for the man who discov- 
ered it. In its natural state it is a canary yellow. It is 
generally dyed dark brown but often is made to imi- 
tate sable, in which case, it ranks lowest in the sable 
group. Dyed Kolinsky will turn red so quickly that it 
usually is not practical. 

Russian Broadtail is new-born lamb. When the lamb is 
born, gauze is bound tightly around its skin. This 
impresses a pattern on the extremely short, fine, silky 
hair. The skins are taken when the lamb is a week or 
two old. The pelt is thin, soft, translucent. Natural 
broadtail is a neutral greige. It is usually dyed black. 
This is the most precious member of the caracul 
family. 

Breitschwanz is Russian broadtail dyed in Leipzig. 

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DESIGNING WOMEN 

American Broadtail is not baby lamb at all, but ordi- 
nary lamb sheared, the pattern being stamped or em- 
bossed onto it. Eventually, of course, the pattern dis- 
appears. 

Moire Caracul is baby lamb. The skins usually are 
taken when the lamb is a couple of months old. The 
fur is longer than broadtail and has a flat wave. The 
pelt is extremely lightweight and almost translucent, 
so moire caracul can be draped like cloth. Moire cara- 
cul ranks next below Russian broadtail, and usually 
comes from China. 

Caracul being an older lamb has a heavier pelt, longer 
and more loosely waved hair than moire caracul. So 
it ranks just below it. 

Persian Lamb also is lamb but of a different breed than 
that used for caracul. The best quality comes from 
Russia or Afghanistan and has a tight, flat curl. The 
luster of the skin is another important point to notice 
in judging Persian. The pelt should be bluish-black. 
A brownish-black pelt means an old skin. 

Black Fox has long, fine hair. It is the rarest and most 
valuable member of the fox family. 

Blue Fox is a handsome cocoa beige with a skin as blue 
as that of a skye terrier. Look for this blue pelt to 
identify natural blue fox. Dyed imitations will have 
a brown pelt. 

Silver Fox is valued in proportion to the softness of the 
fur. The more silver, the more fashionable at pres- 
ent. But the amount of silver does not affect the value. 
Silver fox ranks next below blue fox. 

— 242 — 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

Pointed Fox is red fox dyed black with white hairs 
stuck into it artificially. These hairs are sparse and 
coarse. Pointed fox is far inferior to silver fox, and, 
like all imitations, in questionable taste. 

Cross Fox is a cross between silver and red fox and is 
strikingly beautiful. It ranks below silver fox. 

Alaska Seal is real seal. It is, in its natural state, a 
neutral gray. It is dyed black or brown by a special 
process that leaves the pelt untouched. It wears for- 
ever. Look for a beige-white pelt. Dark brown pelts 
betray old skins. 

Hudson Seal is not seal at all, but dyed muskrat with 
the long hairs plucked out. Hudson seal always is 
dyed black. It wears well but not as well as Alaska 
seal. 

Beaver: The best beaver is the darkest. The fur is thick 
and fine and wears well. Unless the skin is cured by 
the newest process the fur will curl and mat and need 
constant ironing. Ask about this when you buy 
beaver. There is quite a vogue now for sheared beaver 
but the thickness of the fur still will identify it. 

Nutria looks like beaver and acts like beaver but its 
fur is not so long nor so thick. It doesn't wear as well 
as beaver and is less expensive. 

Mole should be silky and soft. It usually is dyed a blue- 
gray or taupe and is most perishable. 

Squirrel: The best squirrel comes from Russia and is 
blue-gray. A brownish cast means inferior quality. 

Australian Opossum is the best. It is blue-gray with 
very fine shortish hairs. 

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DESIGNING WOMEN 

American Opossum is silvery gray with long coarse 
cream-colored hairs. It is far less valuable than Aus- 
tralian opossum but rather beautiful. 

Natural Skunk is easily recognized. 

Tipped Skunk is natural skunk with the white hairs cut 
out. It may be distinguished from dyed skunk by the 
rich brownish black color of the hairs near the pelt. 

Dyed Skunk is a coarse, shiny black fur. Under rule 
five, it is far inferior to tipped skunk. 

Leopard: The best leopard comes from Ethiopia. It is 
a flat, strong, sleek, tawny fur with spots like paw 
prints. It wears well. 

Bengal Leopard has a more orange tone and is less 
valuable but wears equally well. 

Leopard Cat is fluffier than leopard with a more neu- 
tral color. The spots are single blobs of black. Leop- 
ard cat is far inferior to leopard. It sheds and wears 
badly. 

Lynx is the most aristocratic member of the cat family. 
It is a beautiful, silky, luxuriant blonde fur with 
long hairs that have light gray tips. It should have a 
silvery, bluish-gray cast. The finest lynx comes from 
the Hudson Bay section of Canada, and Alaska. 

Russian and Scandinavian Lynx have a coarser texture 
and a brownish cast. This is not desirable. 

Black Lynx usually is dyed since natural black lynx is 
a rarity. 

Lynx is an extremely perishable fur and should not be 
expected to give long or hard wear. 

American Badger is the best, having the longest, finest, 

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HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

and softest hair. It is white, going into beige. The 
long hairs are touched with black near the ends. 

Chinese Badger has coarser, shorter hair and a trans- 
lucent pelt. 

Natural Wolf has long coarse hair. It is a gray-brown 
color and wears wonderfully. It is used only for 
trimmings. 

Raccoon is familiar to anyone who has ever been to 
college. It is never dyed. And it is almost indestruct- 
ible. 

Baronduki is chipmunk. It is beige with the familiar 
dark brown chipmunk stripe. 

This is by no means a complete list but we think it 
covers the most confusing furs. 



^eu/elti 



Uncut jewels are valued according to beauty, trans^ 
parency, hardness, and rarity. Beauty implies color. You 
will find that diamonds may be black, blue, or yellow 
as well as white; rubies pale pink as well as red, and so 
on. Such freak shades of these stones are valuable chiefly 
because of their rarity. All four precious stones: emer- 
alds, rubies, sapphires, and diamonds, are transparent, 
hard, and extremely rare as compared to semi-precious 
stones. 

In cut stones, the expertness of the cutting influences 
the quality. An amateur can not possibly judge cutting 

- 245 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

except to recognize the most obvious classifications. 
Brilliant cuts are many faceted. Step cuts have a flat 
table top designed to display color to advantage. Cabo- 
chon cuts have a smooth arched dome. Cutting involves 
flaws, lines of cleavage, single-, double-, or triple-cutting, 
and a whole raft of things for experts to worry about. 

From this you may see that you should never buy 
precious jewels except from a reputable jeweler. But 
here are a few things you should know so that you can 
ask intelligent questions about precious stones, or se- 
lect semi-precious ones with authority. 

Precious Stones 

Ranged in order of value per carat, emeralds take 

first place, rubies second, with sapphires and diamonds 

tied for third place. 

Emeralds: The finest emeralds come from the Ural 
Mountains. No one has ever made a successful syn- 
thetic emerald. But some of the semi-precious tour- 
malines, those which are bottle green with a trace 
of blue, resemble emeralds sufficiently to be called 
"Brazilian emeralds" although their color is quite dif- 
ferent from the clear green of the precious stone. 
Some green garnets, however, look so much like em- 
eralds that a laboratory test is needed to distinguish 
between them. 

Rubies: The best rubies are the Burmese pigeon blood 
rubies which are a slightly purplish red. Rubies can 
be duplicated synthetically but microscopic imper- 

— 246 — 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

fections or bubbles betray these fabricated stones. 
Star rubies have air spaces which form a star in the 
center of the stone. When cut en cabochon this star 
is magnified. Star rubies are always milky and so they 
are not nearly as valuable as clear pigeon bloods. 

Sapphires: The finest are those clear, cornflower blue 
stones found in the Himalayas. Both lighter and 
darker sapphires are less valuable than these. Sap- 
phires are closely related to rubies, both being va- 
rieties of corundum, so it is possible to make synthetic 
sapphires too— and detect them in the way we de- 
scribed for recognizing synthetic rubies. Star sap- 
phires, like star rubies, are cut en cabochon to show 
oflE the star. They too are milky and rank far below 
clear sapphires and just below star rubies. 

Diamonds: The best diamonds, barring freaks, are blue- 
white. A dull, yellowish tinge means a bad diamond. 
This must not be confused with the bright canary 
yellow diamonds which are clear and rare. Connois- 
seurs have a trick of breathing on a diamond to dim 
its brilliance so they can see the color better. 

Another factor that helps to determine the quality 
of a diamond is its fire. To gauge the fire, experts use 
a diamond as a prism to throw rainbows on to a white 
card. The greater the brilliance and width of these 
rainbows, the greater the fire. 

White zircons look like diamonds but it is easy to 
tell the difference because when you look through the 
stone at an object, a diamond will let you see a single 
image of it but a zircon will make you see double. 

- 247 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Semi-Precious Stones 

Semi-precious stones are not as hard or as rare as 

precious stones. 

Opals are judged by their flash and the intensity of 
their color. The best are the black opals, so-called be- 
cause the matrix is black or gray. The stones them- 
selves are the most colorful imaginable. The char- 
acteristic opal structure riddled with incipient breaks 
makes it tremendously brittle. Even sharp changes of 
temperature can reduce an opal to fragments. 

Topaz includes a bewildering array of color but the 
best topaz is a beautiful sherry shade. Authentic 
topaz is called precious topaz. It should not be con- 
fused with Oriental topaz (corundum) and Spanish 
topaz (quartz) . 

Zircons are not as hard as topaz but harder than the 
quartz group. They have great brilliance and fire. 
White zircons look amazingly like diamonds. The 
most desirable zircons today are a Prussian blue in- 
duced artificially by heating the yellow stones. 

Garnets: The reddest garnets are found in Kimberley 
and Arizona. They are often called Cape rubies and 
Arizona rubies. Opaque garnets are comparatively 
valueless. Garnets were much used for jewelry in the 
Victorian era and are enjoying a revival of popu- 
larity today. 

Tourmalines rank with garnets and are equally com- 
mon. We have mentioned under emeralds the type 
known as Brazilian emeralds. Other types are a yel- 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

lowish green and a reddish rose often confused with 
rose quartz. Such tourmalines often are found in Chi- 
nese jewelry. 

Amethyst is quartz, valued by the depth of the color 
which ranges from lavender to a deep royal purple. 
Watch for patchy uneven color which detracts from 
the value of the stones. 

Rose Quartz is a translucent stone ranging from pale 
pink to a deep rose red that resembles the rose tour- 
malines. The Chinese carve rose quartz exquisitely. 

Chalcedony is a milky white, grayish, bluish, or creamy 
translucent stone also much used for carving. 

Carnelian is an orange-red chalcedony whose uniform 
texture lends itself to beautiful carving. 

Chrysoprase is apple-green chalcedony not to be con- 
fused with Imperial jade which is bluer. This stone 
is now growing rare. 

Turquoise should be a clear sky blue. Liquids, grease, 
dirt, and age turn it green. Turquoise matrix is less 
valuable but often more artistic. Bone turquoise is a 
fossil in which cell structure is visible under a micro- 
scope. Beware of green shades since there are at least 
three comparatively valueless stones that look like 
greenish turquoise. 

Lapis Lazuli: The best lapis comes from Siberia and 
is called Russian or Siberian lapis. Real lapis may be 
identified by small bright yellow metallic grains and 
veinlets. The deep ultramarine color is best. Swiss 
lapis is cracked quartz artificially colored. Lapis is a 
favorite medium for Chinese carving. 

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DESIGNING WOMEN 

Jade varies from translucent "melting snow" white to a 
deep, heavily mottled spinach green. Many things in- 
fluence the value of jade: intrinsic worth, rare color, 
antiquity, and carving. Intrinsically, the semi-trans- 
parent emerald green "Imperial" jade is choicest. 
From a color standpoint the rare yellow and blood 
red and the still rarer violet jades from Burma are 
finest. Antique jades may be known by their change 
of color due to oxidation, from green to brown ochre 
or dull red. This is not an accurate clue to the exact 
antiquity however, because pieces that have been 
buried oxidize fastest. Do not confuse soapstone with 
jade; it is much softer and cheaper; or Californite, a 
translucent green stone sometimes called California 
jade; or Saussurite, a greenish, grayish or brownish 
mica from which cheap "jade" ashtrays are made. 

Amber may be cloudy or opaque. Sicilian amber is usu- 
ally a rich, reddish brown, generally transparent. 
Baltic amber runs from canary to orange-yellow, and 
from transparent to cloudy. It is common and con- 
sidered inferior to the Sicilian variety. Burmese amber 
goes from deep red through brown to honey yellow, 
and from clear to opaque. It includes also a rare 
black amber. 

Coral is secreted by coral polyps. The bits shaped like 
little sticks are not considered even semi-precious. 
The so-called precious coral comes from the Medi- 
terranean and ranges from red to pink. 



250- 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

Pearls 

Pearls can not be compared with stones, though we 
might say the finest rank just below precious stones and 
like them should be referred to an expert for evalua- 
tion. Pearls should be valued by shape and luster. 
Shapes are valued in the following order: spheres, ovals, 
pear shapes, drops, and irregulars. 

The luster of true pearls seems to shimmer from 
below the surface. Because pearls are soft, they are 
easily scratched and must be treated with great care. 
Also, to preserve their luster they must be worn. 

Color is important only from the standpoint of rarity. 
Pearls are usually white with a creamy yellow or milky 
blue cast. Rarer tones are salmon pink, reddish and 
gray. Black pearls are rarest of all. 

The care with which a string of pearls is matched or 
graduated also affects its value. 

Oriental Pearls are found in the shells of a certain 
species of inedible oyster. They are caused by some 
irritation which has entered the shell and has been 
surrounded by layers of oyster secretions. They should 
not be confused with the less valuable fresh water 
pearls. The best fresh water pearls are found in 
mussels and look much like Oriental pearls. The in- 
ferior conch mussel pearls have an opaque, porcelain- 
like look. Pearls found in clams and edible oysters 
have the opaque luster of china and are least valuable 
of all natural pearls. 
Cultured Pearls: A cultured pearl is made by delib- 

-251- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

erately introducing a grain of sand or some similar 
irritation into the oyster shell. The result is an exact 
duplication of the Oriental pearl yet it is not nearly 
so valuable. 
Imitation Pearls: The value of imitation pearls de- 
pends, naturally, on how successfully the translucent 
shimmer of genuine pearls is copied. Another con- 
sideration however, is strength. Some imitations are 
brittle. 

Settings 

Settings should be tightened and necklaces restrung at 
least once a year. 

Platinum Settings: At present platinum is the most 
valuable metal. The most valuable platinum is al- 
loyed with iridium to make it harder. Platinum looks 
much like white gold but it is even whiter, because 
the alloy in the white gold gives it a moire silvery 
look. 

Gold Settings: Pure gold would be 24 carat. It is never 
used for settings because it is so soft it needs an alloy 
to keep it from wearing away. Most Victorian gold 
jewelry is 10 carat, most modern jewelry 14 carat. 
G old m R y be red^ g old, green gold, ox white gold. But 
the color does not affect thejialue. 

G^LD Filled and Rolled Gold Plate contain more 
gold than gold plate. 

Silver Settings: Silver is used a great deal in hand 
wrought settings because it is so soft it is easy to work 
with. Of course it tarnishes easily. 

- 252 - 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

Teweled Watches: Jewels are u sedm ^watches at points 
where a hard substance is needed to withstand fric- 
tion. These may be rubies, synthetic rubies, synthetic 
sapphires, or garnets. There may be from five to 
twenty-three jewels in a watch. While the stones are 
so small as to be practically valueless, .^ie^^O££Jewels, 
t he more valuable the watch . This, however, is a 
question of workmanship. 



X 



ace 



Here we have a situation something like that of silk 
and rayon. Real lace is made by hand, imitation lace by 
machine. Many imitations are in good standing today. 

Even the lace experts will tell you it's hard to eval- 
uate laces in terms of cold cash because artistic values 
enter into the matter quite as much as actual intrinsic 
worth. It's like putting a price tag on a painting or 
sculpture. No two people will agree on what a work of 
art should bring in the open market. However, a few 
things are certain. 

Antique laces, like any antiques, come high. But 
antiques are tricky. Always consult an expert to deter- 
mine whether or not a piece of lace is really antique. 

Real lace outwears machine made lace many times 
over and has a freehand look that gives it greater beauty 
than machine lace. On the other hand, it hasn't the 
crispness of machine-made lace, which is often starched. 
So for purposes of chic, good machine lace may be 

- 253 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

preferable. Also machine lace may come in more mod- 
ern patterns. But when it does imitate the traditional 
laces, it should be made to look as much like the real 
thing as possible— reproduce an authentic pattern in 
the thread proper to that type of lace. Consequently, it 
is desirable to become familiar with the commonest 
types of lace in order to know what an imitation ought 
to look like, and judge it accordingly. In certain types 
of lace, hand-run imitations are best. That is, in many 
real laces, the filled-in parts of the pattern (called the 
toile) are outlined by a cord carefully buttonholed on 
in relief. So, to copy them well, it is necessary to outline 
the pattern of the imitation with a hand-run thread. 

It is also desirable to know something about the dif- 
ferent threads used in real lace. Most real lace is made 
of special thread, usually linen or cotton. The common- 
est exceptions are Chantilly and Blonde, which are 
made of silk. But even cotton thread must not feel cot- 
tony. Such thread gives away imitations instantly. 

Given the proper thread, lace is valued according to 
the amount of work involved. The more elaborate the 
pattern and the finer the stitches or mesh, the more 
valuable the lace. 

Real lace is made in four ways: with a needle (called 
needlepoint or point lace) , with bobbins (called pillow 
lace because the bobbins are spread out on a pillow) , 
with a crochet hook, or by appliqueing needle or bob- 
bin lace onto a machine mesh— called decorated net. 

Of these we shall describe only a few of the more 

- 254 - 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

famous laces according to their commonest patterns and 
general appearance. 

Needle Laces 

These are the "grand" laces, usually reserved for 
wedding gowns and veils. Most needle laces have out- 
lined patterns so imitations should be hand-run. The 
best known needle laces are listed below. 
Point de Venise has no mesh. The patterns are joined 
by spokes which may assume a mesh pattern. These 
spokes are buttonholed or picoted. 
BuRANO has a cloudy mesh caused by an uneven thread. 

Often it has tiny incrustations called pearls. 
Brussels Needlepoint and Rose Point: Brussels Nee- 
dlepoint is a needle lace with a particularly fine mesh. 
Too often this lace has the rather hackneyed raised 
rose pattern (you can slip a finger under some of the 
petals) which has given it the name of Rose Point. 
Novices think Brussels Point is not genuine unless it 
has this rose, to the disgust of connoisseurs who con- 
sider the rose too common and not particularly beau- 
tiful. 
Point D'ALENgoN has a fine strong mesh and flowers 
stiffened with horsehair or human hair. Alen^on, of 
course, is imitated universally, for lingerie, usually 
in rose beige or brown. Imitations don't have the hair 
stiffening but are quite strong enough for lingerie 
duty. In buying Alen^on, always be sure it's hand- 
run. 

- 255 - 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Bobbin Laces 

(made all in one piece) Of these the most important are 
Chantilly and Blonde, 

Chantilly is a wide black or white silk lace with a 
gossamer mesh and large floral patterns. It is much 
copied by machine for dresses and dress trimmings. 
The pattern is outlined so imitations should be hand- 
run. 

Blonde so called because it used to be made in ecru 
thread, is now usually black or white silk. It is made 
in much the same manner as Chantilly but usually 
has open flower centers filled with Point de Paris. The 
patterns, which are more typically Spanish than those 
of Chantilly, are outlined, so imitations should be 
hand-run. Blonde is used for the same purposes as 
Chantilly. 

Point de Paris has a strong, coarse mesh that silhou- 
ettes the pattern strikingly. It is much in demand for 
lingerie because it combines beauty with strength. 
The pattern is outlined so imitations should be hand- 
run. 

Point de Lille has a clear, light mesh, often dotted 
with point d'esprit. It makes beautiful insertion. The 
pattern is outlined so here, too, imitations should be 
hand-run. 

BiNCHE is a narrow lace with an all-over pattern and a 
characteristic snow-ball motif. It is used for lingerie 
and insertion. 

-256- 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

Valenciennes is usually a narrow edging with a square 
mesh and delicate running or spaced motifs. Machine 
copies are used for lingerie. 

Torchons are loosely looped edgings with no solid 
motifs. Of all laces, they are, perhaps, the most com- 
monly copied by machine. 

Cluny is usually made for edgings. It often has a little 
leaf pattern. 

Maltese lace, too, is generally made as edgings, or as 
collars and cuffs. It frequently bears the Maltese 
Cross. 

Bobbin Laces 
(Made in separate motifs which are joined afterwards) 

DucHESSE, HoNiTON AND MILANESE: Duchesse is made of 
fine thread loosely worked into patterns of elaborately 
interlacing leaves, flowers, and arabesques, usually 
with few open spaces. The patterns are joined with 
picoted spokes. Duchesse has never been copied suc- 
cessfully by machine. It is a great favorite for collars 
and cuffs, especially when silhouetted on dark velvet 
gowns. Honiton and Milanese are made in much the 
same way and really are regional variations of the 
same lace. 

Rosaline is a bobbin imitation of Rose Point which 
looks something like Duchesse, though it is usually 
more open. It also is used for collars and cuffs. 

-257- 



m 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Decorated Net 

Brussels Applique may be needle or bobbin lace ap- 
pliqued on a gossamer sheer machine-made mesh 
which throws the pattern into high relief. 

Crocheted Lace 

Irish Lace has a characteristic rose and shamrock 
pattern and a good deal of picoting. It is used for 
collars and cuffs and insertions. A lot of Irish lace is 
now made in China. Or course, there is nothing like 
Irish linen, so the thread of Chinese "Irish" is apt to 
be inferior. 

lAJommansklp 

The more work there is on a garment, the better, 
provided it is good work. Here's what to look for. 
^. Seams: Raw seams are worst, notched seams better, 
and French seams best. In gloves, turned in seams are 
desirable in thin leathers. In heavier leathers, pique 
sewing is desirable or hand stitching is better yet. 
2. Hems: Hand-rolled * hems or hems finished with rib- 
bon are good workmanship. 
,3. Buttonholes: Hand-made* buttonholes are good. 

But tailored ones that look morticed in are better. 
4. Stitching always gives away cheap work. It must be 
straight and true. 

-258- 



HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY'S WORTH 

5. Pockets: Set-in pockets are better than patch pockets 
unless the latter have hand-stitching.^ 

6. Buttons: Covered buttons are always an indication of 
good workmanship. 

7. Zippers are better than hooks and eyes for plackets 
because they give better fit. They should be covered 
or enameled to match the costume or both. 

8. Finishing and Hand Work: * Hand-tacking,* hand- 
run * tucks, hand-rolled * hems, etc., all add to the 
value of a garment. The care with which lace is in- 
serted (as in lingerie) is important. There should be 
no raw edges. And the cutout patterns fitted into the 
fabric are better workmanship than edgings sewed on 
in a straight line, or cutout patterns appliqued on. 
I n shoes (except walking shoes') hand turned sole s 
are desirable a nd bench-made shoes (mad(^ entirel y 
by hand) are best of all. (You have to take the store's 
word about the shoes, because you can't make sure of 
the hand-work without taking them apart.) In jewelry 
h and-wrought * settings are to be d ^m^d. 

9. Detail: Tucks, stitching, shirring, yokes, pleats (par- 
ticularly umbrella pleats that take more work) all en- 
hance a costume. The more of such work the better. 

10. Cut and Fit require the greatest skill of all. You 
can judge this only by trying on a garment and seeing 
if it flatters you. 

* Hand work may be distinguished by its irregularity or freehand 
look. 

-259- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



S^tuL 



How can you tell well-styled merchandise? Here are 
a few things to look for. 

1. Simplicity: This does not mean lack of detail. But 
it does mean no gingerbread— no weird changes of 
fabric to use up odds and ends— no gewgaws put there 
to distract the eye from sleazy fabrics, no fancy trim- 
ming to cover the designer's shortcomings. 

2. Waist-lines: Make sure they really fit. Belts are 
often used to help a dress with about as much fit as 
a gunny sack pull itself together. 

3. Neck-lines: Demand that your neck-lines make a 
design without benefit of scarfs or collars. 

4. Cuffs: The best tailored suits have none. (And it's 
quite a trick designing a sleeve without one.) 

5. Color: Insist upon clear colors or soft off shades. 
Muddy or garish tones always betray cheap dyes. 

6. Detail: Make sure the thread with which your suit 
is stitched or the ribbon band on your hat, or the 
lining in your coat, or whatever detail your costume 
involves, matches it exactly. 

Now go ahead and criticize merchandise with author- 
ity. With all this information at your fingertips, you can 
trust yourself to know the difference between a good 
buy and an awful sell. 

— 260 — 



j^«^ta<AMi^ --- 



CHAPTER TWENTY 



And Finally That Indefinable Something 

Sir James Barrie called it charm and said, "If you 
have charm you don't need anything else. And if you 
haven't charm, nothing else matters much." Elinor 
Glyn called it simply "It." The French call it chic. The 
fashion magazines call it distinction. The stage calls it 
appeal. Hollywood calls it glamour. Business calls it per- 
sonality plus. Alice Hughes defines it as "something 
between cosmetics and clothes with a dash of confidence 
thrown in." Whatever you call it, it starts with a state 
of mind, and induces a state of mind in others ranging 
from feminine envy bordering on despair, to masculine 
admiration strong enough to make men jump through 
hoops— or more practically, jewelers' doors— as if they 
were bewitched. 

Now this state of mind is largely self-confidence, 
which is a very different thing from vanity. Vanity 
is over-assurance— a calm assumption of the divine right 
of beauty— an attitude that is irritating to men and 
women alike. On the other hand, an inferiority com- 
plex makes others as uncomfortable as it does the com- 

— 261 — 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

plexee. But self-confidence is something else again— a 
feeling of pride in the job you've done on yourself. It 
makes for gaiety which is attractive. It begets poise. 
And poise prevents working at being attractive. A 
French woman commenting on Americans told us the 
manner of the average American is the manner of the 
French cocotte— a ceaseless striving for attention. The 
French woman of breeding sits back serenely and lets 
men discover her. 

Of course we can't go around simply willing men to 
swoon at our feet. This state of mind needs outward ex- 
pressions through beauty culture, costume, and carriage. 

To begin with beauty culture, if we can manage to 
look at ourselves objectively as mannequins do, we need 
not worry about other people's assets. We know we can 
do a lot with our own. When we have finished the 
requisite grooming of hair and hands and skin, if we 
have some feature that is not conventionally beautiful, 
we can take the bull by the horns and stress that fea- 
ture; make it an arresting accent more exciting than 
static, conventional perfection. 

Ilka Chase once pointed out that the glamour girls 
are never pretty. They are interesting and that, of 
course, is the modern ideal of beauty. People are just 
beginning to realize the truth of this principle although 
it always has been true. The great sirens of history were 
not perfect. Cleopatra's nose was too short and it proved 
much more piquant than the classic noses of her 
Roman rivals. Gloria Swanson was urged to have her 
non-conforming nose made over. If she had agreed, 

— 262 — 



THAT INDEFINABLE SOMETHING 

she probably would have escaped notice altogether. 
Katharine Hepburn, who certainly is not lacking in 
self-confidence, stressed her generous, drooping mouth 
with make-up that made it even more so. Garbo, whose 
straight hair presented a problem, finally let it hang in 
the long bob that was copied from coast to coast. 

So remember: today nobody need be unattractive or 
old. The beauty salons can do anything. One of the 
smartest women in the international set boasts that she 
is the ugliest woman in Paris. She swears she looks like 
a monkey. But actually, she has made her irregular fea- 
tures provocative to the point of fascination. So, you 
see? The more discouraging your features, the greater 
the challenge to your ingenuity and taste, and the more 
potential distinction you have to work with. 

Next, as to costume; we can express our love of beauty 
and cultivate that expensive look that is due our well 
kept complexions and hair and hands and figures. All 
this helps to make us feel desirable, and look it. Of 
course, it is up to the individual to decide just where to 
draw the line; just where rank extravagance begins for 
her. But bear in mind that out-and-out frivolity is not 
wasteful if it bolsters up your ego. Psychologists are be- 
ginning to realize that these things are necessary to 
feminine mental health. They're much more effective 
than tonics and so much easier to take. 

Perfumes give you value received when they give you 
a lift. Furs are worth more than the actual warmth they 
provide if they make you feel distinguished. A bit of 
good jewelry is worth the price if it helps your morale. 

-263- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

Even the luxuries that don't show at all are worth the 
price of their admission into this country from nations 
that have a better understanding of women. A woman's 
frivolous indulgences— her bath salts that bubble like 
champagne, her body lotion for a stimulating rub- 
down, her toilet waters and sachets and extravagant 
lingerie— all give her a feeling of being rather precious 
herself. Such a feeling is her birthright and the best pos- 
sible insurance against neuroses. We have come a long 
way from our Puritan beginnings. Today a woman is 
commended for spending money (within reason) on 
herself. It is expected of her in business and social life. 
It is an investment that brings cash returns as well as 
intangible satisfactions. 

And finally, as to carriage, a woman's bearing ex- 
presses her state of mind more eloquently than any one 
thing. They tell a story about Ziegfeld, watching his 
girls passing in review. He was considering them for a 
certain bit. Eventually he chose the least beautiful of 
the lot. Asked why, he said, "She feels beautiful." And 
she did. She carried herself proudly. Her gestures were 
relaxed and therefore flowed gracefully, one into an- 
other. Her state of mind created an illusion of beauty. 

Often you can work from the outside in. A new hat 
will make you hold up your head. High heels will make 
you walk daintily. A well-cut costume will give you 
something to live up to and you will stand better in- 
stinctively. But all this ought to be part of your fem- 
inine equipment. You ought not to depend on your 
clothes for your beauty. Sending girls to dancing school 

— 264 — 



THAT INDEFINABLE SOMETHING 

teaches them to manage their feet, and gymnasiums 
help their postures. We'd like to see every school in- 
clude a course in stage deportment to teach little girls 
what to do with their hands so they won't be at a loss 
later unless fortified with a cigarette and a cocktail glass. 
You may think all this terribly affected. Of course it 
will make you self-conscious until you've mastered it. 
But you ought to practice deportment secretly in front 
of a mirror until it becomes second nature. To begin 
with posture, the army sums it up graphically in the 
blunt words "Tuck in your tail and suck in your guts." 
Someone else says raise your chest and everything else 
will fall into line— feel as if you were suspended from 
the ceiling by your chest. Theodore R ooseve lt told his 
children to "walk tall." Our physical culture expert says: 

1. Stand up with knees relaxed and rotate them 
slightly outward. (This will bring your hips to- 
gether to avoid a spreading derriere.) 

2. Hitch your tummy up and in and tuck in your 
rear. 

3. Drop your shoulders, flatten your back and up 
comes your chest. 

4. Throw back your head and tuck in your chin. 



We notice that, if your shoulders are back and 
dropped, your arms cannot hang straight and limp with 
simian awkwardness— they suddenly become part of you 
and you discover things to do with them. 

Renee Long says never break at the middle. Feel as if 

-265- 



DESIGNING WOMEN 



you were cast in cement from shoulders to hips. This is 
particularly helpful when sitting. Margery Wilson says 
if you feel stiff when sitting erect, put your head a little 
to one side. 

We suggest, if your hands are still bothering you, 
watch a model as she shows a dress. She doesn't hug her 
bag; she changes it about from hand to hand. She ad- 
justs her fur scarf, and so on. You will notice that it 
helps to carry something. Probably that's why British 
army officers carry swagger sticks and elegant ladies walk 
their dogs. In the evening a chiffon kerchief, or even a 
flower plucked from your corsage, gives you something 
to cling to. So much for rudiments. When you've mas- 
tered them, you're ready for the subtleties. 

The art of wearing clothes depends on an innate feel- 
ing for them. Actresses and the best mannequins never 
wear a costume without rehearsing in it before a mirror; 
studying the best way to tilt a hat, suiting their walk 
and gestures to a coat or suit or dress, practicing the 
management of a train, draping a wrap or fur scarf, get- 
ting the feel of the clothes so that unconsciously they 
will play up to them. 

Hope Williams wrote an article about this some years 
ago. She told how she altered her whole bearing for dif- 
ferent costumes. In a suit she would stride across the 
stage to stand feet apart, arms akimbo with her back to 
the fireplace. She would unbutton the jacket and put 
her hands on her hips, almost like a man clasping her 
hands under his frock coat tails. All her gestures would 
be deliberately angular. In a military dress, suit or coat, 

-266- 








i9 




V 



^UjCf- 




\ 



^fi^ 



.^ 



.(^ 



DESIGNING WOMEN 

she would march as smartly and stand as erect as any 
West Point cadet. In chiffons, Miss Williams became 
quite a different person. She seemed to float rather than 
walk, her arms found softer, more picturesque poses. 
Here the Hollywood walk is proper in contrast to the 
trim steps suited to a tailleur or the loose, swinging gait 
that goes with swagger tweeds and walking shoes. The 
Hollywood walk is a slow, measured tread. You stand on 
one foot and swing the other around in a semi-circle 
until it comes to rest directly in front of the first one. 
Of course, in any costume, you should always walk, as 
Margery Wilson says, on one line. Otherwise you will 
look like an Irish bog trotter leaping from one compara- 
tively dry spot to another over the ould sod. The Holly- 
wood walk comes close to dancing; it is a smooth glide 
which is quite in the spirit of a dance frock. 

To go still further into subtleties, a crinoline skirt 
requires a touch-me-not attitude; an animated dainti- 
ness of gestures and mien. A Chinese mandarin wrap 
will suggest the tiny steps and folded hands of a Manchu 
princess. All this sounds terribly overdone. But nat- 
urally, not being on the stage, you will be content with 
a mere undercurrent of this feeling. 

As to trains, every bride who has posed for a wedding 
picture knows the trick of pirouetting to drape a train 
about your feet as you stand to be photographed or re- 
ceive guests. 

These tricks remind us of the smartest mannequin on 
Fifty-seventh street. A certain merchant swore she was 
worth millions to him. She wasn't conventionally beau- 

-268- 



THAT INDEFINABLE SOMETHING 

tiful. But she loved clothes. She would hug a wrap to 
her as if to say, "Don't you adore it?" And she sold the 
clothes right ofiE her back. 

If women would only cultivate this feeling for clothes, 
it would give them a much wider scope. When a woman, 
says, "I can't wear clinging things," it may be because 
she doesn't know how to be a clinging vine herself. The 
more of this flexibility she can develop, the more of the 
various roles discussed in Chapter 9 she can assume. 
Every woman is a bit of an actress at heart. So why not 
cultivate that talent? It's refreshing both to her and to 
her audience to be all things to all men. 

So much for the three c's of that indefinable some- 
thing for which charm is as good a word as any— cosmetics, 
costume and carriage (including clothes consciousness) . 
We promise you they will make all the difference be- 
tween resigned self-consciousness and serene self-confi- 
dence. 



— 269 — 



Jrndc) 



Accessories, 18 

Afternoon dress, the, 151 

Agnes, 143, 147 

Alaska seal, 243 

Alix, 134, 142, 143, 147 

Amber, 250 

American badger, 244-245 

American broadtail, 242 

American opossum, 244 

Amethysts, 249 

Angora, 231 

Angular figure, the, 17, 28-33 

Ankles and short skirts, 13-14 

Antelope suede, 235 

Arden, Elizabeth, 111, 117 

Arno, Peter, 8 

Australian opossum, 243 

Badger, 244-254 

Bags, 164, 165, 166, 168 

Bankhead, Tallulah, 130 

Baronduki, 245 

Barrie, Sir James, 261 

Bathing suits, 74-75 

Baum marten, 241 

Beaver, 243 

Benda, Wladyslaw Theodor, 97, 

125 
Bengal leopard, 244 
Bennett, Constance, 12, 84, iii 
Binche lace, 256 
Black fox, 242 
Black lynx, 244 
Blended mink, 240 
Blonde lace, 256 
Blue fox, 242 



Bobbin laces, 256-257 
Bourbon, Louise, 143, 147 
Bragaard, Eric, 143, 147 
Breitschwanz, 241 
Brilliant-cut stones, 246 
Broadtail, 241 
Brussels applique, 258 
Brussels needlepoint lace, 255 
Budgeting your clothes, 207-220 
Burke, Billie, 7, 117 
Burne-Jones, Sir Edward, 103 
Buttonholes, 258 
Buttons, 259 

Cabochon-cut stones, 246 

Calfskin suede, 235-236 

Camel's hair, 231 

Caracul, 242 

Carnegie, Hattie, 112, 113, 135, 142 

Carriage, 264-269 

Cashmere, 231 

Chalcedony, 249 

Chanel, 7, 135, 136, 139, 142, 20i 

Chantilly lace, 256 

Charm, 261-269 

Chase, Ilka, 262 

Chiffon, 228 

Chinchilla, 239-240 

Chinese badger, 245 

Chrysoprase, 249 

Claire, Ina, 120 

Cleopatra, 262 

Clothes questionnaire, 209-220 

Cluny lace, 257 

Cocktail clothes, 157-158 

Cocktail fabrics, 165 



— 271 — 



INDEX 



Coiffures, 61-62, 92 
College girl, the, 195-199 
Colors, 64, 95-1 15» 169-172, 220, 260 
Colors and background, 113-115, 

169-172 
Colors and skin tones, 99-100 
Colors and the seasons, 114-115 
Color schemes, 111-115 
Colors that flatter your eyes, 102- 

103 
Colors that flatter your hair, 105 
Combining colors, 108-115, 162-163 
Combining fabrics, 163-166 
Combining lines, 161-162 
Combining styles, 166-168 
Commuting clothes, 191 
Complimenting one's coloring, 7 
Convex profile, the, 89 
Cookman, Helen, 135, 142, 177 
Coquette, the, 7, 117-120 
Coral, 250 
Cosmetics and natural coloring, 

100-101 
Costumes, 164, 165, 166, 263 
Costume changes, 221-226 
Cotton, 230 

Country clothes, 154-156 
Country dub clothes, 191 
Couturiers, 7, 134-142 
Crawford, Joan, 12 
Creed, Charles, 135-136, 142 
Crocheted lace, 258 
Cross fox, 243 
Culottes, 66-70 
Cultured pearls, 251-252 
Cut and fit, 259 

Dach6, Lilly, 143, 147 
Decolletage and the thin woman, 

H 
Decorated net lace, 258 
De Flory, Fernan, 144, 147 
Del Rio, Dolores, 11, 80 



Descat, Rose, 144, 147 

Detail, 259, 260 

Diamonds, 245, 247 

Dietrich, Marlene, 7, 83, 93, 1^, 

137 
Dining-out clothes, 157-158 
/Distinction of dress, 5, 200-204 
Doeskin suede, 235 
Dramatizing one's temperament, 7 
Dressier, Marie, 18 
Dressmaker suits, 151-152 
Ducharne fabrics, 201 
Duchess of Devonshire, 96 
Duchess of Kent, 7, 125 
Duchess of Windsor, 7, 84, 116, 120 
Duchesse lace, 257 
Dyed skunk, 244 

Earhart, Amelia, 176 
Embonpoint (tummies), 14, 60 
Emeralds, 245, 246 
Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 159 
Empress Josephine, 1 15 
Ensembling, 160-168, 216 
Ermine, 240 

Evening clothes, 158-159, 192, 198 
Evening materials, 165-166 
Executive, the, 193-195 
Exotic type, the, 7, 130-133 
Expectant figure, the, 48-49 
Eyes, 102-103 
Eye shades, 73 

Fabrics, 163, 164, 165, 166, 828-232 

Fabric tests, 231-232 

Faces, 77-94 

Felt, 233 

Figures, 18-49, 92 

Finishing, 259 

Five-to-seven clothes, 157-158 

Flannels, 231 

Flat chest, the, 14, 54-55 



— 272 — 



INDEX 



Fontanne, Lynn, 125 

Fragonard, 119 

Francis, Kay, 12 

Full-breasted figure, the, 43-47 

Fords, 5, 200, 203, 217, 218-219, 220 

Fur coats, 211-212 

Furs, 164, 165, 166, 237-245 

Gainsborough, 96, 127 

Gamine type, the, 6, 128-130 

Garbo, Greta, 7, 12, 122, 263 

Garnets, 248 

Gloves, 164, 165, 168 

Glyn, Elinor, 261 

Gold, 252 

Goya, 130 

Guy, Maria, 144, 147 

Hair, your, 103-105 

Hand work, 259 

Harper's Bazaar, 194 

Hartnell, Norman, 136, 142 

Hats, 63-64, i43-»47» 163, 164, 165, 

167 
Hawes, Elizabeth, 136, 142 
Hems, 258 

Hepburn, Katharine, 7, 128, 263 
Hips and the sheath silhouette, 

14, 60 
Hollywood, 11, 77, 92-93, 100, 137, 

261 
Hollywood walk, the, 268 
Honiton lace, 257 
Hopkins, Miriam, 12 
Hopper, Hedda, 12 
Housewife, the, 188-192 
Hudson Bay sable, 241 
Hudson seal, 243 
Hughes, Alice, 112, 261 

Idealizing the face and figure, 7 
Imitation pearls, 252 
Imitations, 215-227 



Ingenue, the, 7 
Irish lace, 258 

Jade, 250 

Jap mink, 240 

Jewelry, 6, 164, 165, 166, 246, 253 

Jewel settings, 252 

John-Frederic, 144, 147 

John, Augustus, 116 



King, Muriel, 137, 
Knitted suits, 202 
Kolinsky, 241 



142 



Lace, 253-258 

Lady Abdy, 138 

Lady Furness, 204 

Lanvin, 7, 137, 141, 142 

Lapis lazuli, 249 

Large ankles, 58 

Large arms, 56 

Large feet, 58-59 

Large hands, 57 

Large hips, 14 

Large waist-line, 59 

Laurencin, Marie, 97 

Leathers, 164, 165, 234-237 

Lelong, Lucien, 137-138, 142 

Leopard, 244 

Leopard cat, 244 

Liberty fabrics, 201 

LiUie, Beatrice, 86, 128, 176 

Linen, 230, 232 

Lingerie, 73, 203-204 

Long arms, 56 

Long-chinned profile, the, 91-92 

Long face, the, 86-87 

Long neck, the, 51-52 

Long, Renee, 265 

Louiseboulanger, 7, 138, 142 

Lynx, 244 

McMahon, Aline, 12 



273 



INDEX 



Machine lace, 253-254 

Madame de Pompadour, 96, 119 

Madame du Barry, 117 

Mainbocher, 7, 138-139, 142 

Make-up, 62-63 

Maltese lace, 257 

Marthe, 144-145, 147 

Masking bad points, 14 

Matinee fabrics, 165 

Maxwell, Elsa, 38, 214 

Medici, the, 6 

Mergentime, Marguerita, 201 

Metamorphoses, 222-226 

Milanese lace, 257 

Milliners, 143-147 

Millinery fabrics, 233 

Mink, 240 

Moire caracul, 242 

Mole, 243 

Molyneux, 7, 137, 138, 139, 142 

Monet, 125 

Monteil, Germaine, 139-140, 142 

Mousseline, 228-229 

Movie stars' height, 11-12 

Mussolini, 128 

Narrow shoulders, 53 

Natural mink, 240 

Natural skunk, 244 

Natural wolf, 245 

Neck-lines, 13, 65, 161-162, 260 

Needle laces, 255 

Non -conformists, 7 

Nutria, 243 

Opals, 248 

Opossum, 243-244 

Optical illusions, use of, 8, 10 

Oriental pearls, 251 

Oval face, the, 80-81 



Paquin, 140, 142 



Patou, 3, 162 

Patrician type, the, 7, 1*5- 127 

Pearls, 251-252 

Perfect chest, the, 55 

Perfect hips, 60 

Persian lamb, 242 

Pickford, Mary, 4 

Pin seal leather, 237 

Pitts, Zasu, 12 

Platform fashions, 173-178 

Platinum, 252 

Playsuits, 75 

Plump figure, the, 12, 33-38 

Plump neck, the, 52 

Pockets, 259 

Point d'Alen^on lace, 255 

Point de Lille lace, 256 

Point de Paris lace, 256 

Point de Venise lace, 255 

Pointed fox, 243 

Pongee, 229 

Pons, Lily, 117 

Powder foundations, 92-94 

Precious stones, 246-247 

Pre-Raphaelites, 96 

Princess Juliana, 82 

Princess of Kapurthala, 139 

Princess Matchabelli, 122 

Princess Paley, 122 

Prints, 201 

Profiles, 88-92 

Psychology of color, 106-108 

Quality, 227-228 

Quartz, 249 

Queen Elizabeth of Belgium, 127 

Queen Mary, 63 

Raccoon, 245 
Rayon, 229-230, 232 
Real lace, 253-258 
Reboux, 145, 147 
Receptionist, the, 179-182 



-274 



INDEX 



Reptile leathers, 237 

Retrousse profile, the, 90 

Rinehart, Mary Roberts, 207 

Robin Hood, 128 

Rochas, Marcel, 7, 139, 142 

Rolled gold plate, 252 

Romantic type, the, 7, 122-125 

Roosevelt, Mrs. James, Senior, 178 

Rosaline lace, 257 

Rose point lace, 255 

Rose quartz, 249 

Rossetti, Dante Gabriel, 141 

Rouff, Maggy, 140, 142 

Round face, the, 82-83, 93 

Rubies, 245, 246-247 

Rubinstein, Helena, 130 

Rules for flattering the face, 78-79 

Rules for flattering the figure, 

13-18 
Rules for planning a wardrobe, 

209-219 
Russian broadtail, 241 
Russian lynx, 244 
Russian sable, 241 

Sable, 241 

Salesgirl, the, 183-186 

Sally Victor, 146, 147 

Sapphires, 247 

Sateen, 228 

Satin, 228 

Scandinavian lynx, 244 

Schiaparelli, Elsa, 128, 136, 139, 

140-141, 142, 145, 201 
Seal, 243 
Seams, 258 

Secretary, the, 186-188 
Semi-precious stones, 248-250 
Shantung, 229 
Sheared beaver, 243 
Shearer, Norma, 86, 93, 111 
Sheath silhouettes, 6 



Shirring, 14, 54 
Shoes, 164, 165, 166, 167 
Shoes and stockings, 65 
Short arms, 57 
Short figure, the, 12, 18-23 
Short neck, the, 50-51 
Sidney, Sylvia, 12, 82 
Silhouettes, 6, 64 
Silk, 228-229, 232 
Silk stockings, 233-234 
Silver, 252 
Silver fox, 242 
Simon, Simone, 12 
Simplicity, 260 
Skin tones, 99-100 
Skunk, 244 
Slacks, 66-70 
Sloping shoulders, 53 
Sophisticate, the, 120-122 
Sports clothes, 6, 66-76 
Sports materials, 163-164 
Sport shoes, 75-76 
Square face, the, 84-85, 93 
Square hands, 58 
Square shoulders, 54 
Squirrel, 243 
Step-cut stones, 246 
Stitching, 258 
Stone marten, 241 
Straws, 233 
Street clothes, 151-154 
Street fabrics, 164-165 
Stuart, Gilbert, 102 
Style, 260 
Suedes, 234-236 
Suits, 151-153, 213 
Sullavan, Margaret, 92 
Summer ermine, 240 
Summer tan, 70-73 
Suzy, 145, 147 
Swanson, Gloria, 262 
Swarthout, Gladys, 80 
Swayback, the, 59-60 



275- 



INDEX 



Tailleur suits, 151-152 

Talbot, 145, 147 

Tall figure, the, 11-12, 23-28 

Temperaments, 116-133 

Thin arms, 55 -56 

Thin neck, the, 52-53 

Thin wrists, 57 

Thomas, Clara Fargo, 111, 177 

Tipped skunk, 244 

Titian, 96, 103, 125 

Topaz, 248 

Torchon lace, 257 

Tourmalines, 248 

Town clothes, 157-158 

Travel clothes, 156-157 

Trousers, 66-70 

Turquoise, 249 

Tweeds, 6, 212, 213, 230 

Underdressing for the spotlight, 

175-178 

Valenciennes lace, 257 
Vanderbilt, Gloria, 204 
Vanderbilt, Gloria Morgan, 120 
Van Dyke, 123, 125 
Velvet, 228 
Velveteen, 228 



Villon, Francois, 128 
Vionnet, 138, 141, 142 
"Virgin wool," 231 
Vogue, 38 

Waist-lines, 14, 59-60, 162, «6o 
Walker, Dr. Mary, 154 
Washington, George, 102 
Watches, 253 
Watteau, 119 
West, Mae, 11, 12 
What to wear at parties, 158-159 
Wide-hipped figure, the, 39-43 
Wide-shouldered effect, the, 12 
Wide shoulders, 54 
Williams, Mrs. Harrison, 125 
Williams, Hope, 266-268 
Wilson, Margery, m, 266 
Winter ermine, 240 
Wolf, 245 
Wool, 230-232 
Work clothes, 191 
Workmanship, 258-259 
Wrinkles, 93 

Ziegfeld, Florenz, 264 
Zippers, 259 
Zircons, 248 



-276 



Date Due 



^S 



RE 







'€"SU 



^r^^^. 



Designing wornen, 
646B993d 



ililliii* 

3 U1.2 031" 13T> 



io /*<^ 



7? 




:* vyr^